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Freedom Fundamentals

Social Meta-Needs*:
A New Basis for Optimal Interaction

Paul Wakfer



The discovery, development and explication of a new fundamental basis for a truly free and optimal society over a period of decades (presented herein) has convinced me, Paul Antonik Wakfer, that the multiplicity of meanings of many vernacular words is the most important factor preventing adequate communication between individuals, even when completely well-intentioned. During those processes, it also became clear that certain concepts, essential to their completion, are not present in the vernacular language. It was therefore necessary to clarify and specify many word definitions, and even to create a few, happily using some current vernacular words with multiple meanings some of which were closely related to what was needed. The result of this is that many words and phrases used in this treatise are effectively the technical terms of the presented theory. All such usages are indicated by their beginning letter (and letter beginning their root part) being capitalized and their first usage within a new section is linked to an unambiguous definition (within this treatise or elsewhere). In this manner, the exact meaning of such a technical term should always be clear to the reader. On the other hand, the vernacular meanings of such words (with precise technical meanings when capitalized) have not been abandoned and their standard non-capitalized form is used where appropriate and reasonably unambiguous to that meaning. (Unfortunately, this method still leaves a little ambiguity for words that begin a sentence, but that turned out to be minor, being usually clear from the context.)

For the first time reader it is probably best to not use the links from these technical terms, but instead, simply attempt to understand such a word or phrase to have the vernacular meaning that seems appropriate to the context in which it is used. After in this manner obtaining some understanding of the ideas presented in this treatise, the reader will then be better positioned to understand the need for the specialized definitions of such words when these are pursued on a second reading. Since the meanings and usages of these technical terms are usually significantly different (often subtly so) from any vernacular usages (even though related in meaning), these meanings and the need for them will require this kind of circular learning approach to be fully appreciated. It is my intention, and my hope, that this approach will enable the reader to understand the deep and novel ramifications of the Theory of Social Meta-Needs, and to give it serious consideration as a basis for optimal human society.


Evidence from a variety of science and social disciplines is integrated to create a new approach to the basis and determination of the optimal methods of Social InterActions within Society. A new concept is defined and developed: Social Meta-Needs - those properties of the Environment of InterActions within Society common to all Members, which facilitate the highest possible attainment of Lifetime Happiness by each. Ethical egoism is redefined as a hypothetical imperative that is shown to be fully compossible and to form a logical and consistent basis for human Actions that will achieve the Social Meta-Needs. It is argued that the concept of "rights" is neither a complete nor a consistent basis for human Liberty, and that "rights" should be replaced by Stipulations concerning Entitlements and Responsibilities within a new conception of a Social Contract in order to facilitate the achievement of the Social Meta-Needs - the Members of the Society being those who Execute the Contract together with all their Property. The nature of Harm and Violation within the redefined concept of ethical egoism, and the principles for their determination, are considered in relationship to the Social Meta-Needs. It is argued that the Social Meta-Needs require that the only reasonable justice ethic is the complete restoration of a Victim to the State of Happiness in which he would have been if the Violation had not occurred, with the amount and type of Restitution Required being determined solely by the Victim. The limitations and the practical implementation of such an ethic are also discussed. The Natural Social Contract is provided as an embodiment of that portion of the Social Meta-Needs which can be enabled and stabilized by means of formal Stipulations. Full and complete Social Preferencing, effectively extending market preferencing to all aspects of human interaction, is shown to constitute the less formal, but more essential means to achieve the Social Meta-Needs. Unambiguous definitions of many terms and concepts are made, as a necessary part of the developments introduced.


For well over 300 years, since at least the time of Hugo Grotius, natural rights has been the reigning paradigm of classical liberal (libertarian) thought and the basis of all major quests for complete Liberty and ever more Freedom both Social and Personal. After reaching a peak of effectiveness about 200 years ago, however, it is now becoming increasingly clear that this paradigm is unable to advance human Liberty towards that higher level of completeness that many people ardently desire, but relatively few are striving to achieve, because most now think that it is an utopian ideal, impossible for mankind. Thus, instead of enabling the production of Processes1 of Social order far more optimal than current or past ones, the natural rights paradigm appears to have become a stagnant dead end with no clear way to extend it to achieve any deeper insight into human Social relationships than was already well understood more than two hundred years ago.

Another major reason why previous attempts to formulate better Processes of Social order have proven deficient is because the authors of such attempts directed their foremost concerns to the management of the most violent, immoral and inhuman members of society. Such an approach is no more likely to achieve an optimal state of Social interaction for those well-Intentioned, yet imperfect, individuals who form the vast majority of Society, than are teaching methods designed for poor students likely to achieve optimal results for the average (and definitely not the best) students. Since the Processes of Social order by which even the most well-Intentioned may best manage their relationships are not obvious, it is imperative that such Processes be determined to best fit the Social Actions of the well-Intentioned before they are then examined to see whether and how they will operate to best deal with the Social Actions of the relatively few individuals who would Intentionally refuse to follow such Processes. Such an optimal set of Processes for the well-Intentioned should be altered as minimally as possible and only where absolutely necessary to accommodate the conditions relating to Intentional Violators.

This treatise is an attempt to introduce a new paradigm describing human Relationships by the use of which approach the author is convinced a way forward to a less restrictive Society with far more Liberty and Available Actions for all, is possible.

The Definition of Life

Since human thinkers began to ponder reality, they have tried to separate all existing things (Existents) into two disjoint classes with respect to the Attribute life. One current dictionary defines life as: the state of a material complex or individual characterized by the capacity to perform certain functional activities including metabolism, growth, reproduction, and some form of responsiveness or adaptability2; and any Existent with such Attributes is said to be living or alive (ie. it is a life-form).3 While there are some organic structures on the edge of life that contain in themselves only the third and fourth Attributes (reproduction and responsiveness or adaptability - the latter only genetically), it is clear that all of these life Attributes are true for humans as well as all multicellular plants and animals. However for the purposes of this treatise, which focuses only on human life, it is the responsiveness [and] adaptability that is essential and which I take here in its broadest meaning - a meaning that includes all human thoughts, emotions, Choices and Actions. In particular I will focus mainly on the responsiveness and adaptability of the human brain to its entire Environment. As I will demonstrate, the properties of a human's Environment determine the degree to which, and the ease with which the other Attributes of his life are able to be attained and maintained, and his Lifetime Happiness is able to be increased.

Environment - Broadly Defined and Distinguished from Self

I use Environment in the sense of its broadest definition: the aggregate of the surrounding things, conditions and influences4 and I take surrounding also in its broadest sense, as meaning all matter, energy and Events that are outside of the Existent under consideration and can Affect it in any manner. Not placing any limitation of nearby on the definition of Environment is particularly important with respect to any analysis of a human's Environment on himself at the current time, because of the significant Environmental influence of relatively inexpensive worldwide transportation and communications. It is also important to note that a clear distinction is made between the Internal and the External of a human individual. Elsewhere,5 I have referred to this as the fundamental separation between the I (Self) and the Non-I (Non-Self). This separation is particularly evident and important with respect to the human brain since it has an Internal Information bandwidth at least three orders of magnitude greater than its External bandwidth - the combined bandwidth of Information flowing either toward (afferent, sensory or input) or away from (efferent, emanating or output) the brain.6 The Self may also be thought of as the inalienable portion of each human individual (of his Person) - that part over which he has amounts and kinds of Control and amounts and kinds of Information and knowledge (ie. of Self-Mastery and self-knowledge) which Control and Information cannot, even in principle, be transferred to or ascertained by another human. In this last sense, the Self extends to the body, even though the bandwidth between brain and body is little higher than between the brain and the External world (the Environment).

The Necessity of Environmental Stability

It is a primary fact of Reality that the Attributes of all Existents and their Environments continuously undergo Change. On the other hand, since all Attributes of all Existents are ultimately measurable7 (otherwise the word Existent would have no consistent meaning, since it would not have a referent that is determinable to be definite and unique), it is clear that a determination of the rate of Change of any such Attribute is also ultimately possible.8 I use the term stable to describe an Environmental Attribute, the rate of Change of which is, and remains sufficiently small relative to its Effect on a given life-form9 - where sufficiently small means that the Effect of the rate of Change of the Environmental Attribute does not decrease the average Lifespan of the life-form to a value less than a major portion of its maximum lifespan (the largest life Duration of any member of its species).10 On Earth and in the absence of very specialized technology, such Environmental factors as pressure, and oxygen and toxin content of surrounding air/water, gravitational force, magnetic field strength, level of visible and ionizing radiation, etc. are stable with respect to humans and most other life-forms, while food supply, air/water velocity, temperature, precipitation, ground motion, etc. have been and may be quite unstable at various times and places. While relative stability of some Environmental factors is necessary for the structural short-term continuity of even non-living Existents, in general, far more Environmental factors are required to be stable in order for life-forms to remain alive. It is also important to note that for a given level of the Environmental requirements that allow normal functioning11 of the growth, development, maintenance and reproduction of a life-form, such functioning will remain closer to normal when the Environmental Attributes are relatively stable than when they undergo large and/or rapid Changes about the same average values as the stable ones of the comparison. Since for a human, normal functioning is equivalent to him being able to optimally increase his Lifetime Happiness,12 such increase also will be most easily achieved within an Environment that is very stable or at most undergoes relatively small Changes of certain Parameters in a cyclical or otherwise predictable manner.13

The Environmental Requirements for Life

There are many possible methods of Classifying the Environmental requirements of life into distinct Categories with respect to their Effects upon a given life-form. At first thought the terms primary and secondary might be used respectively to separate those Environmental requirements without which a life-form would immediately die, from those that are only necessary for it to remain alive in the longer term. For humans such parameters as the pressure, and the oxygen and toxin content of the air, and the level of visible and ionizing radiation appear to be primary, while such parameters as the food supply, wind velocity, temperature and precipitation are secondary (the latter three are secondary only if within certain bounds). However, upon deeper examination it is seen that there are always some Environmental Parameters, Changes of which would produce a reduced average Lifespan equal to any desired fraction of the normal average Lifespan of a given life-form.14 Therefore, while the terms primary and secondary could be used, the means of demarcation of the two resulting Categories would be a subjective somewhat arbitrary Duration, perhaps defined as a fraction of the Lifespan of the life-form, rather than being a logical Classification arising naturally from Reality.

Moreover a critical examination and thorough comparative analysis of the various kinds of Environmental conditions reveals that some of them are necessary before it is possible for many of the others to be of Benefit15 to the life-form. This Characteristic (of prior necessity), or the lack of it, does appear to constitute a clear logical distinction between various Environmental Attributes. A very obvious example (and usually unnoted assumption) of such a necessary prior Environmental condition is the gravitational attraction of the Earth on a life-form and all its physical Environmental needs; however more generally, this is the case for all of the basic laws of physics. Without the nature of Reality (as expressed by physical law) being very close to its current form, no life-form including human would be able to perpetuate its life, nor even to have come into Existence. The Existence of water and most of its specific Attributes is another example of a requirement that is necessary for the Existence of all Earth life-forms. I define the term Meta-Needs as the class of those Environmental conditions without which it is impossible to obtain the more direct and immediate requirements for the normal functioning of the life-form - ie. they are logically antecedent to and hence, more important than the direct and immediate life needs.

Among all life-forms, humans have learned to predict, Change and Control much of their Environment to a greater extent and in a profoundly different manner than any other. While it is true that a human's Environment may be Changed by the Actions of other humans in a similar manner to which it is Changed by non-human caused Events, the ability of adult humans to effectively communicate and Choose to Act or not to Act, including to Relate or not to Relate to other humans, creates the possibility for new kinds of Environmental Meta-Needs. Since these new kinds of Meta-Needs are only meaningful and attainable within the presence of other humans, I have termed them Social Meta-Needs. Social Meta-Needs then are those Environmental conditions that can be obtained only within a Society of InterActing humans (more generally of Freemen) and are required to be stable for all Members of the Society so that each Full Member will be able to gain all the other goods and services that he needs in order to optimally increase his Lifetime Happiness.

Human Uniqueness and Inscrutability

The discoveries of modern human biology have made clearer than ever before that each human is not only unique, but significantly different from every other. In the words of G. Gibson, in a paper in the journal Current Biology,16

"Each of us differs from one another by several million snippets of genetic information, and untold millions of life experiences. Out of this complex milieu of variation arise propensities that define our individuality -- whether we are likely to suffer from heart disease or depression, explore new worlds or perform great athletic exploits, find contentment raising six kids or discontent working 80 hour weeks."

Note that this individuality extends not merely to physiological differences, but more importantly, and with even more variation, to differences in mental Evaluative Choices. This greater mental variation comes about not only because the sum total of life experience data from which mental differences derive is far greater than the largest possible number of genetic polymorphism differences,17 but because the mental differences derive from both the genetic and the developmental differences. Furthermore, the developmental, and hence even moreso the mental differences, are highly compounded, not only by one another, but by the fact that they are heavily influenced by the genetic differences even within shared environments.18

The fact that each individual has a significantly different mental Evaluation Process from every other, coupled with the fact that his input/output (External) Information bandwidth is vastly lower than his mental (Internal) Information bandwidth, implies that it is impossible for most InterActing people19 to make their mental Evaluation Processes known to one another sufficiently that each will be able to understand (much less be able to predict) the Decisions of the other with a significant degree of accuracy. In fact the only time this might not be so would be when the individuals Involved are extremely compatible and have been companions for many years (so that the low bandwidth of Information exchange has been partially overcome by the Duration of such exchange). This fact of InterPersonal Reality (ie. of human Social nature) implies that any simple rule of behavior that depends on one person's Evaluation of another's Happiness requirements (such as: "If you do good, then good will be done to you") or on one's equating of one's own desires with those of others (such as: "Do unto others as you would have them do unto you") will generally fail to optimally increase the Happiness of any of the individuals involved, and certainly will fail to optimally increase the Happiness of all of them at the same time.

The Purpose of Life

As opposed to procreation and survival of the species, which had previously been the driving force of a blind evolution, the advent (by evolutionary development) of introspective, conscious thought and a Rational faculty of analysis created the possibility of a new, self-generated purpose for a life-form with those abilities. Although, the physiological pleasure/pain (Happiness seeking) Attribute that humans retain from their evolutionary origins requires that psychological egoism20 must be the initial guiding principle of human Action, just as its counterpart is for other life-forms, the fully developed analytical faculty of humans necessarily modifies this principle away from merely directing immediately pleasurable (hedonistic) Actions, as with most non-human life-forms, toward directing those wider-seeing, longer-range human Actions whose purpose is to optimally increase that human's total Lifetime Happiness. Thus, does the thinking of a fully developed human transform psychological egoism into ethical egoism21, by replacing instinctive animal behavior directed toward immediate gratification, with introspective, thoughtful behavior directed toward his longest-range, widest-view self-interest, and even to make such behavior mandatory if he wants to optimally increase his Lifetime Happiness.

This self-imposed ought (actually a statement of necessity for the perceived causation of some desired occurrence) is as close in meaning to what has been termed an ethical imperative22 as any valid abstraction can be, and in this particular context a fully proper reply to anyone who asks: "Why do you want to optimally increase your Lifetime Happiness?" is: "Because I do - I want to optimally increase my Lifetime Happiness simply because I Exist. The nature of my Existence as a human being is such that that Existence would not be consistent (and thus would not Exist as what it is - what evolution has wrought it to be) if my life purpose were not to optimally increase my Lifetime Happiness." This means (and this should be carefully noted by the reader) that where the term ethical egoism is used in the remainder of this treatise, it is not meant as relating to any categorical imperatives in the Kantian sense. Instead I define ethical egoism as simply meaning Acting in one's Rational self-interest, and the reason that such Action is ethical is because it aims to achieve the primary good, ie. its purpose is to increase one's Lifetime Happiness as much as possible. Thus, one might define the hypothetical imperative of ethical egoism as "one ought to Act in one's Rational self-interest because that is the optimal way to increase one's Lifetime Happiness" or "If you want to optimally increase your Lifetime Happiness, then always Act according to your Rational self-interest".

The Compossibility23
of Ethical Egoism

Few philosophers have maintained that, in its most Rational form, ethical egoism is fully able to be practiced in a mutually consistent manner by all individuals within a Society (ie. that ethical egoism is compossible). In modern times perhaps only Ayn Rand dared to be so bold.24 One of the reasons for this lack of philosophical adherents to such a notion (apart from its imperative nature in all past invocations) is because there are two related aspects pertaining to Rational self-interest that would appear to limit its compossible extent. Both aspects are related to the assumed potential that a Violator25 of others may be able to avoid the negative consequences of his Violation. Since ethical egoism would not be sustainable as a sufficient basis for compossible Social Meta-Needs if the Benefit/Harm Evaluation by any individual relating to his breach26 of the Social Meta-Needs Rationally favors such action, a high probability of relatively low cost successful escape from the negative consequences would clearly invalidate the sufficiency of ethical egoism as such a basis. There are two distinct kinds of Actions by which a Violator might hope to avoid the potential cost (Harm to himself, both direct and indirect) of his Violation whether that cost be punishment (including discrimination against him by others - hereafter termed negative Social Preferencing) and/or Restitution to his Victims: hiding and dying.

Hiding from the Effects of one's Actions can take two distinct forms. The first kind of hiding, which I will term Social removal, is a kind of self-imposed Social ostracism - usually by journeying to some place isolated (sometimes remote) from the original Event. Social removal of oneself from all those with knowledge and concern about one's Violation was the major kind of hiding used in the past because it was often a relatively easy method of avoiding negative consequences, particularly where a Violation brought a large sum of liquid and easily transportable assets to the Violator. While Social removal is still frequently used today, in the modern world with its rapid, inexpensive travel and communications abilities, the risk of detection and capture within a given Duration is much increased from what it was in the past. With the resources available in a fully free society and sufficient desire on the part of the Victim(s) or supportive organizations, the risk of failure of any Social removal tactics for escaping responsibility for one's Violation can be made much higher than in the past.

The second type of hiding, which I will term Social disguise, was difficult in the past, but is becoming ever easier and more frequent as modern technology makes available more impersonal electronic forms of Relationships and Value Exchanges. Hiding by Social disguise is also greatly aided by the socially promoted and legally protected trend toward personal privacy and anonymity which has become ever stronger since the advent of automated and widely accessible data bases during the latter half of the 20th century. Unfortunately, by making it easier for a Violator to escape by Social disguise, this modern desire, sanction and promotion of privacy "rights" and anonymity operates against the justice requirements of Social Meta-Needs - that Violators should be held fully responsible for their Actions and that Victims should have their Lifetime Happiness fully restored. Moreover, since all Exchanges of Value are more optimal in proportion to the amount of available Information about what is being Exchanged, this trend toward privacy and anonymity is also reducing the optimality of even non-Violational InterPersonal Exchanges below that which was previously the norm of society. It is therefore clear that the Social Meta-Needs of humans require that each human be willing and even wanting to make all possible Information about himself easily available to all others, so that any other person can reasonably fully Evaluate him and determine whether or not he (the Evaluator) wishes to initiate or accept InterAction.27

Escape by dying is relevant to any situation in which a Violator has a low risk of incurring a net loss of Happiness (ie. a reduction of Lifetime Happiness), as a result of his Violation, before the end of his life. Escape by dying applies strongly to the situation of a tyrant who is able to maintain sufficient Control for a long enough time that his nefarious deeds will go unpunished and/or UnRestituted during his Lifetime. If he is effective enough (usually meaning ruthless enough), then the relatively short Duration of his tyranny caused by his also relatively short natural Lifespan, and the similar Lifespans of his Victims, will allow him to escape punishment and/or Restitution before his natural death from aging dysfunction. (Of course, any combination of the two kinds of escape may and will likely be used by a Violator.) Unfortunately, the still relatively short human Lifespan and the trend towards easier Social disguise, has increased rather than decreased the chance that a Violator will never be held responsible for his Violation (which is why Social disguise and privacy must be strongly Preferenced against and eschewed by all those who really desire to have a more optimally operating Social order). Fortunately, the growing biological knowledge of aging suggests that aging decline is effectively a disease that can be cured and that humans will very soon (perhaps even within decades) be able to live vastly extended lives.28 Such a large increase of average human Lifespan will have the major Benefit of lowering the probability that a Violator can escape punishment and/or Restitution within his Lifetime.

In summary, if Social disguise is disparaged, discriminated against and made very difficult within society (ie. negatively Socially Preferenced), then as human Lifespan becomes longer and longer, the probability of complete escape from responsibility for a Violation will become smaller and smaller. A tyrant (a Violator of large numbers) may be able to stay in power or a Violator of few may be able to remain undiscovered for 50 years, but both accomplishments will be far more difficult for 500 years while the Victims also remain alive seeking punishment and/or Restitution from their Violators and constantly making others aware of the prior atrocities perpetrated by such Violators (Social Preferencing again).

Nevertheless, although the modern existing, emerging and future possibilities described above do imply that there will be a highly reduced probability of successful escape from the negative consequences of a Violation (particularly once strong Social Preferencing is fully used), they still do not imply that fully compossible ethical egoism must inexorably follow. This is because the risk of Harm (due to capture and the consequent exacting of punishment and/or Restitution) may still be worth taking if the increase in one's Lifetime Happiness thereby gained is high enough.29 Even worse, there is usually far less risk of such loss for a Violator if the Victims are not left alive (because they can then no longer give evidence, chase and capture, and/or demand punishment/Restitution from the Violator - although such extreme behavior will be less likely if strong Social Preferencing has been implemented and is in general use). Therefore, depending on the nature of the Violation, if the only reason for non-Violation were the Harm from punishment and/or Restitution, it might well be in the self-interest of the Violator to kill his Victims (and even all their friends/relatives) right off; and the incentive to do this will be even stronger when human Lifespan is greatly increased.

Fortunately there is another logical argument that ethical egoism is a sufficient basis for Social Meta-Needs which fortunately does not require that escape, no matter how done, always has more risk of Harm attached to it than the Benefit to be gained. In effect, it must and will be shown that more net Benefit (more increase in Lifetime Happiness) is possible from non-Violation than from Violation, not because of the risk of the Harm from punishment and/or Restitution due from the Violation, but because of the Benefits ensuing indirectly from non-Violation and lost either directly or indirectly as a necessary result of any Violations.

Social Meta-Needs

As previously defined, Social Meta-Needs are those Environmental Attributes of and within Society, common to all individuals, which facilitate the highest possible attainment of Lifetime Happiness by each. The basis of Social Meta-Needs is to be found in the ethical egoism of the individual human, which implies that seeking to optimally increase his Lifetime Happiness by means of optimizing his Benefit/Harm Estimations and consequent Chosen Actions, must be his ultimate purpose. Social Meta-Needs are not ends in themselves, but rather the conditions and tools of Social InterRelationships - the Social means needed to be common to all individuals so that each individual can best attain his ends.

In order for a human to optimally produce goods and services that he can Exchange for those produced by other humans so that he and they can each optimally increase their lifetime happiness, he and they need to have a Social Environment in which first, there is no Violation of their Persons and their Property,30 and second, as much Information as possible is available about all the Personal and non-personal Existents of potential Exchange. But even with respect to the latter, such needed Information importantly includes the Personal Social Characteristics of those making the Exchange itself which Characteristics form an integral aspect of the totality of the Exchange. Furthermore, both of these Environmental needs are precisely the kinds of Social conditions that can only be attained by the cooperative effort of the vast majority of people within the Society. If a significant number of Members of Society subvert it, such necessary Environmental conditions will not be available to anyone.

By Violating others, whether Intentional or accidental, a person increases the likelihood that many of the goods and services, which otherwise might be produced in the future and which would then increase his Lifetime Happiness, are not created, produced and made available for him to procure. Thus, to the extent that a person Violates others he destabilizes the Social Environment and, thereby, decreases his potential Lifetime Happiness by reducing the scope and potential Benefit of all his future possible Exchanges of goods and services (ie. by reducing his future Available Actions - his Freedom).31 Although the total Value to a Violator of such forgone Benefits is unknown by definition, since his Action destabilizes Society, not only will the contributions of his Victims towards such Benefit be reduced, but so will that of every Member of Society, and thus, there is good reason to expect that on the average such loss will be far greater than any immediate Benefit gained by such an Act (of Violation). Thus, the real question that any potential Violator needs to ask himself is one directly related to his own self-interest: "Do I really wish to give up the Benefits that I will gain from the production of goods and services that my Action will prevent from being produced?"

By practicing and promoting privacy and anonymity, a person limits, reduces and distorts the available Information that both he and others require in order to optimize their Value Exchange Estimations, and, consequently, decreases the likelihood that such Exchanges will increase his Lifetime Happiness. If each Member of Society does not make as much Information about his Personal Social Characteristics as possible readily available to all others, neither party will be able to Evaluate the other optimally before Deciding to initiate or respond to an invitation for any kind of Value Exchange. Thus, the real question that a person who thinks that social disguise is desirable needs to ask himself is again one purely related to his own self-interest: "Do I really wish to incur the risk of attempting to Exchange Value with someone about whom I know so little or who knows so little about me?"

These then are the strongest arguments supporting the compossibility of ethical egoism and the possibility that ethical egoism is a necessary and sufficient basis for the Social Meta-Needs of a Society of total Liberty and highest possible Freedom, that:

  • any Act of Violation is contrary to the optimal increase of the Lifetime Happiness of all Members of Society, even including the Violator, because it causes the loss of an amount of future Benefit, unknown, but most likely far larger than any gain from the Violation, which future Benefit the Violational Action prevents from coming into existence; and
  • any Act of social disguise is also contrary to the optimal increase of Lifetime Happiness of all Members of Society because it inhibits the acquisition of the Information about the Personal Social Characteristics each other, which Information is needed in order to make optimal Exchange Decisions.

Moreover the modern ease of transportation and communication, and the emerging extension of human lifespan can operate to strengthen the gains made by both reducing Violation and increasing the availability of Information about Personal Social Characteristics. This is particularly true for a longer life, since that will mean at least proportionately more future Benefit that is directly jeopardized by any Violation, and will mean more likelihood of finding compatible and highly synergistic people with whom to InterAct to mutual Benefit, which likelihood is reduced by Social disguise. This distributed Beneficial Effect, from both reducing Violations and increasing available Personal Social Characteristic Information, can be seen as an extension to the totality of Lifetime Happiness of Adam Smith's "invisible hand" of mutual benefit caused by each voluntary exchange of economic goods and services.

Why not Rights?

Most readers will likely have noticed that although I have been discussing ideas that relate to a concept generally called "rights",32 I have not used that term in presenting any of my related ideas. I fully expect, however, that, because some notion of "rights" is so ingrained in modern political thinking and writing, many readers will have been using it in their minds as they tried to follow and understand my arguments. Therefore I now stress that the reason that I have intentionally not used the term "rights" is that I am convinced that, even though some rights-related ideas have clearly served a valuable purpose in the history of human Liberty, there exists no well-defined (logically valid) concept attached to the term "rights", and thus, the use of that term is inevitably destructive to rational thought concerning the nature of human Social InterAction, the production of human Happiness and the resolution of human conflicts (Violations and/or InterActions with Harmful Effects).33

Here are my reasons for that conviction:

  1. The notion of "rights" essentially reverses cause and effect. As already made clear, one person has little understanding and even less direct Control of the behavior of another. Thus, if a person wishes to maximize his potential for Lifetime Happiness in a Social context, it is the Personal Social Characteristics of his own behavior towards others that will best ensure that they will aid him to achieve his own individual purposes, which should be his first priority to ascertain, to Decide and to Act in accord with, rather than the nature of the behavior of others towards him. Effective behavior towards others must entail more than simply declaring "I have rights!", because any such a demand for behavioral modification by those with whom a person InterActs does little to convince them that it is in their self-interest to not Violate him. For this reason, such a demand by an individual will be unlikely to be effective in persuading others to alter their behavior in ways that will help him to optimally increase his Lifetime Happiness. While it is true that if a person captures and punishes those who Violate him this Action will help to alter their future behavior, such a process is virtually identical to what one would do with any non-human life-form capable of behavioral modification. Surely one can do better than this after-the-fact, conditioned reflex type of persuasion. Surely such a primitive method can not be the optimal way to deal with beings who are capable of long-range Decision making Processes!

  2. There appears to be no concept related to "rights" and concerning human actions in the absence of other humans, which might then become "rights" as a special case within a Social context. This fact alone should make one suspicious that "rights" even exist as any Type of human Attribute, let alone that they are natural and even inalienable. However this is not the case with Meta-Needs. Whatever the life-form, its Meta-Needs are and remain the basic Environmental conditions without which all its other needs are either impossible to obtain or cannot be optimally obtained unless those Meta-Needs are first met. While it is true that Social Meta-Needs also cease to exist outside of Society, this is not a foundational problem but rather a logical semantic consequence. Social Meta-Needs are merely the extra Environmental conditions and tools, only attainable within a Society, which are needed to optimize the attainment of human purposes, rather than being human Attributes (and often behavioral ends, as "rights" are generally taken to be). As opposed to "rights", Social Meta-Needs are a clear extension from the situation of isolated existence into the situation of Social Relationships (ie. InterActions with other humans), of the essential Environmental conditions that each human needs to be extant in order to optimally increase his Lifetime Happiness.

  3. Major logical problems arise, when violations occur, because of the attribution of inalienable or inherent character to some "rights". This is because, if "rights" are fundamental Attributes of human nature, without which, therefore, no life-form can be said to be human, then how is it logically possible for a violator to no longer have some of them? Does a part of his humanity somehow cease to exist at the instant of his violation, or at the instant of the declaration of his guilt by a court? If "rights" are inalienable and not granted by "The State", how can that same "State" logically remove them by a simple decision of its court? And furthermore, how is it possible that "rights" can again suddenly appear when a government prosecutor decides to grant immunity to violators who give evidence against others? Are government prosecutors and judges to be considered as gods who can remove or confer fundamental Attributes of Existence to humans as and when the wish? In fact, if "rights" are assumed to exist as human Attributes, then it seems that they must be allowed to have such evanescent properties of existence as to be like absolutely no other Attribute of any other type of existent. Extending the meaning of Attribute in such a fuzzy manner would appear to be neither logically nor metaphysically sound.34

  4. There are circumstances (generally called lifeboat situations) in which a conflict occurs between the "rights" of others and the self-interest of one or more individuals - where one's best Estimate is that the only possible alternative to death appears to be an act of Violating someone. There are also situations in which Acting to continue to Exist will actually result in a lower Total Future Happiness Expectation, but if one will no longer Exist as a result of the Action (or InAction), then such Action cannot logically be said to be in one's immediate self-interest, and even less in one's long-range self-interest. However, by extending the meaning of self-interest to the concept of Lifetime Happiness, this difficulty is eliminated35 and, by additionally employing the new concept of Social Meta-Needs, the conflict problems of the former can be solved.

    Those who Decide to end their lives can still be acting consistently if their Estimated Lifetime Happiness is already at the maximum it can be. A highly contentious example of this in current society is the situation of a person who is in constant, unbearable and intractable pain and for whom that fact is the major reason for his Estimate that his Total Future Happiness Expectation is negative, and thus, why he wishes to end his life.

    From the point of view of absolute inalienable "rights", even in such a lifeboat situation where one's best Estimate is that one will die unless one perpetrates a Violation, one's duty is to follow the moral imperatives regarding "rights", and to die rather than commit that Violation. However, the twin concepts of Social Meta-Needs and Lifetime Happiness solve this age-old seemingly intractable problem of conflict, since together they imply that the proper course of Action may instead be to save one's life by making the least possible36 Violation of others, and afterwards, to be fully Responsible to the best of one's ability, for all the consequences of any Responsible Harm that one has caused. Such Responsibility implies making complete Restitution of the Responsible Harm from any Violation up to and including total indentured servitude, if necessary. As specified in a complete and consistent Social Contract, any Intentional Violation that is not thought by the Violator to be absolutely necessary to save his life is still proscribed (ie. it has disincentives additional to full Restitution for the Responsible Harm done37).

  5. Even in libertarian political/social theory, certain "rights" (even so-called negative ones) are sometimes lost or must be curtailed, reduced or removed (again, how is this logically possible if "rights" are inherent to human nature?) for the apparent Benefit of all. (Although since all Benefit is entirely subjective, it is not clear how anything but Social Meta-Needs can Benefit all). A simple example of this is the removal of the Liberty (however temporary) of a person accused of a violation until certain conditions are met. In the current society (which still maintains a charade of supporting "rights"), many property "rights" - eg. noise, and other forms of pollution generation - and any personal secession from government rules and support (eg. schooling) are examples of such curtailments.38 This manipulation of "rights" is again inconsistent with their purported nature as inherent and inalienable human Attributes whereas the concept of Social Meta-Needs based on the ethical purpose of optimally increasing one's Lifetime Happiness implemented both by a complete and consistent Social Contract that all Members of Society have Executed and by strong Social Preferencing, solves all such problems with seamless consistency.

  6. In all "rights" theories, special cases of rights need to be made for children and other dependents. A Social Meta-Needs approach can accommodate treatment of children, animals and other dependents in a fully consistent manner using the same reality based philosophical principles that are applicable to all Members of Society.

  7. The enforceable moral claim aspect of "rights", has no other justification, and no other basis for deciding which claims are proper or improper, than that such "rights" are necessary in order for humans to mutually and concurrently optimally increase their Lifetime Happiness. However, Ockham's razor (also called the Law of Parsimony) then implies that there is no need to invent any such concept and furthermore, that such an invention will likely be obfuscating. The justification and basis alone (humans mutually and concurrently optimally increasing their Happiness, ie. the direct purpose for and method of Social Meta-Needs) will be fully sufficient, and far less likely to create logical errors. The implementation of Social Meta-Needs by means of a Social Contract and Social Preferencing can provide solutions to the same problems addressed by "rights", but which solutions are more practical and less arbitrary than law systems based on ill-defined (and even undefinable in any consistent manner) "rights" notions promulgated by legislative bodies or even provided by truly free market organizations.39

    Even with respect to the "right" of Self-Ownership (which most people fully accept humans to possess, even if they don't adequately appreciate what that acceptance really means), there are no clearly valid (reality-based) grounds on which to assert any enforceable moral claim. All that one is fully justified to say about Self-Ownership is:
    1. It is a fact of reality that each and every individual has many kinds of direct sensory input abilities, Internal Evaluation Processes and both Inward and Outward Actions that cannot practically be assumed or accessed by anyone else, although they can be altered by Constraint. Elsewhere I have described this as an individual's Self-Mastery, but since every life-form has this Attribute and it is not a Social Attribute, it cannot logically be the basis for any specifically Social notion of correct behavior ("rights") and indeed this Self-Mastery does not underlie the Social Meta-Need for Self-Ownership.
    2. Each individual greatly prefers to deal with persons who will Entitle40 him to continue to have the Liberty to Choose any of his Available Actions with respect to his Person and his Property, which he thinks will optimally increase his Lifetime Happiness, as long as he similarly Entitles each of them to similar Liberty, and as long as none of the Actions of either are Violations. This is because dealing with such people heightens a person's potential to optimally increase his Lifetime Happiness, both through his own efforts and by his gain from the reciprocal efforts of others to do the same for themselves through Exchanges to mutual Benefit.
    3. As part of the granting of such Entitlement by the other, each individual (party A) agrees to Restitute each other individual (party B) for any reduction of Lifetime Happiness (as determined by party B - he is the only one who can determine it, since only he can assess his own Happiness State and its reduction) should party B be Violated by party A, unless party B was already a Violator of party A (since in that case B had already Breached the Entitling Social Contract). The reason why such Restitution is necessarily included as part of the definition of Entitlement is because without it the environmental stability criterion of Social Meta-Needs will not hold.41

In summary, rights are an authoritative, commanding, imperative approach, whereas Entitlements to Social Meta-Needs agreed to by Contract are an explained, reasoned and negotiated approach to cooperative Social InterAction. Thus, instead of demanding that others accept my assertions of "rights" (or else!), what I should be doing is using reasoned argumentation to convince them to understand why, and that I will, best produce for their Benefit (as well as my own, of course) if they acknowledge my Ownership, use, and Control of my Property (the products of my Person) and of my space (my Real Estate) needed for the storage, maintenance and manipulation of my Person and my Property, all according to certain mutually agreed Stipulations of InterAction, as I, similarly, will Entitle them, precisely because I want them to also best produce for my Benefit.

What is and is not a Violation

In order to pursue his life purpose of optimally increasing his Lifetime Happiness, each individual human needs an Environment that minimizes the expenditure of his resources on Actions required to Protect his Person and Property from Harm, and/or to reverse any Harm done to them, as much as is possible in Reality. With respect to aspects of Reality unrelated to humans, all that a human can do is try to live in the location with the most stable physical Environment (but with that determination being made only after the Evaluation of all contributions to his Lifetime Happiness related to the location), and then do his best to understand, predict and Control his Environment in order to Protect himself from any Harmful Events. However, within a Society humans can exert much more Control over their Environment, than is possible with respect to an Environment that involves only unthinking nature, by including within their Connections to each other detailed specifications about InterPersonal behavior - the purpose of these methods being to achieve the Environmental conditions that I have called the Social Meta-Needs. In order to be compossible, such Societal conditions must, by definition, be the same for all Full Members of the Society. Such a detailed specification requires at the outset a clear separation of all human Actions into two Categories: those that necessarily reduce the stability of the Social Environment needed for optimal Lifetime Happiness production by each individual human, and those that do not.42

Those human Actions that necessarily reduce the optimality and stability of the Social Environment (ie. require more resources to be allocated by all individual humans toward Protection and Harm reversal than would be the case if the Action had not occurred) are precisely those Actions that have necessarily Harmful Effects on the Person or Property of some other human. However, a clear definition of the phrase necessarily Harmful is needed before the Actions with that Effect can be fully identified and separated from those without - ie. such Actions as are necessarily Harmful need to be defined and determined in a manner that is clear to all (as objectively as is possible). In its most essential form, an Action is necessarily Harmful when the affected party's Evaluation of its Effect on his Lifetime Happiness is inescapably negative; ie. when he is physiologically incapable and/or his Property is physically incapable of not being altered by some Effects of the Action in some manner that he Evaluates as Harmful, and furthermore, his Evaluation of the total of all such Harms is greater than his Evaluation of the total of all Benefits from all Effects of the Action. In practice, since, for an advanced (fully mature) reasoning human, Harm from a non-physical Action can be avoided by thinking alone, the meaning of the phrase necessarily Harmful must be limited to include only those Actions that cause physical Harm to the Person and/or Property of a human individual, or that cause physical Harm to others43 so that his potential for future gain of Value through Exchanges with them is clearly reduced. However, great care, thought and precision must be used and applied in order to clearly Categorize the full range of human Social Actions as necessarily Harmful or not. The objective definition of a Harmful Act (as opposed to the Evaluation of the Harm done by the Act, which Harm is necessarily subjective - see the next section) forms the basis of the system of justice by means of Restitution which is implemented by the Natural Social Contract.

Determination of the
Amount of Violation

As established earlier, each person has his own unique Evaluation of everything that Affects him with respect to its Benefit or Harm to his Lifetime Happiness. Furthermore, no other person can significantly know (ie. estimate with a reasonable probability of success) the result of his Evaluation unless and until he communicates it to that other person. (And even then, the limited bandwidth of InterPersonal communication severely limits the completeness of such knowledge.) This fact of Reality is one of the axioms of praxeology, the science of human action.44 The major application of praxeology to date has involved only the economic analysis of the exchange of market goods and services that have objectively determinable values (the actual values for which they are exchanged), even though the full scope of praxeology encompasses all human decisions and actions. While a few thinkers have also been applying praxeological principles to the value exchanges inherent in legal systems,45 the application of praxeology remains deficient in spite of the fact that the theory should be able to elucidate evaluations and exchanges of non-material values within human relationships. The reason for this deficiency in the application of praxeology appears to be that there is no recognized and easily measurable common currency relating to such individual evaluations and exchanges of non-material values, and furthermore, that these non-material exchanges are currently mostly done without conscious evaluation and consideration. In spite of such subconscious evaluation, however, because an individual's unique judgment applies equally to all Evaluations of Harm and Benefit about Events that Affect him, such subjective judgment must be the basis of his Choices and his Actions to optimally increase his Lifetime Happiness, whether in regard to marketplace goods and services to be Exchanged for currency or bartered for other goods and services, or in regard to the Exchange of intangible, Personal InterAction Values, and, finally, whether the individual consciously recognizes this basis or not.

Just as only the individual human can judge the Beneficial Value to himself of the goods and services that he Trades in the marketplace and of the InterPersonal Information that he Exchanges during Social InterActions, so also only he can judge the Harm that he has incurred from a Violation to himself, to his Property or to something else that he Values. Only the Victim46 can judge what is the total decrease of his Lifetime Happiness necessarily (the result of a logically undeniable physical Effect) resulting from the Violational Event. Thus, only the Victim can determine the subjective sufficiency of Restitution, in contrast with the fact of Violation itself, which is objectively Determinable). Any attempt to subvert or eliminate this judgment, by, for example, making the Harm Value dependent entirely on some predetermined and presumed objective47 specification of the negative effects of a particular Violation, must therefore both prevent some Harmed individuals from gaining a complete reversal of the reduction to their Lifetime Happiness (ie. from gaining full Restitution), and provide others a net gain through receipt of more than full restoration of their Lifetime Happiness. In addition, if complete Restitution by the Violator of all loss of his Victims, as perceived by those Victims, is the primary method for such Harm reversal (as I show herein to follow from the theory of Social Meta-Needs), then in the former case (Restitution to the Victim of less than his Evaluation of the Harm he has incurred) the Violator would not have his own Lifetime Happiness reduced enough, and in the latter case (Restitution to the Victim of more than his Evaluation of the Harm he has incurred), the Violator's Lifetime Happiness would be reduced more than necessary to satisfy the requirements of Social Meta-Needs. Thus, any attempt to achieve apparent objectivity in a situation that is fundamentally subjective based on the facts of human nature undermines the possibility for achieving optimal justice (ie. the restoration of a Victim to the Lifetime Happiness State that he would have had if the Violation had not occurred) and distorts the true Values involved in the Decision making Processes behind all human Actions.48 The only way that such objective determination of the amount of Harm actually done to an individual human would be possible is if there were a method to directly read his mind and Evaluate the reduction of his Lifetime Happiness as computed there, or to accurately determine if he is telling the truth about his Evaluation of the Harm.49 However current technology is nowhere near either of these capabilities, and there are reasons to think that the former capability is not even possible for human brains in their current hardware form (the latter just might be possible).

I think that the major reason why the method of determination of Harm done (according to the Evaluation of the Victim), which I have proposed here, has not before been implemented in any legal system (to my knowledge) is that it appears to make an impractical demand on and trust in the Evaluative powers and honesty of the Victim. This assumed impracticality results from the facts that there do not exist objective methods for a person to be certain of his Evaluations, nor for others to be certain he is telling the truth. These facts imply that any Society that implements this method for determining Restitution must provide strong systematic incentives to induce Victims to apply deeply introspective and thoroughly honest Evaluative effort in order to determine the actual Harm done, and equally strong systematic disincentives for not doing so. Such a promotional system is implemented within the Natural Social Contract by means of its Requirements for full openness concerning one's Societal InterPersonal Relationships and the strong Social Preferencing that will be enabled and promoted by such accessible Personal disclosure.

Reversing Violation

On the basis of: the uniqueness of every human individual, the essential inability of one human to know another's Evaluations, the ultimate human purpose of optimally increasing Lifetime Happiness, and the stability of the Environment of Social Meta-Needs required to achieve this purpose, there is only one ethic of justice in human InterRelationships that appears to have any validity; viz. that it is the responsibility of any Violator to restore the Lifetime Happiness State of his Victim, at the time when such restoration is complete, to the same State in which it would have been if the Event of Violation had not occurred - ie. to completely reverse all the specific Effects of the Violation as much as is possible. Upon examining the multi-fold aspects of human Happiness,50 however, it is clear that it is not possible to make every particular aspect of an individual's Happiness State equal to the State in which it would have been if a given Violation had not occurred. The reason for this is essentially the same as why it is impossible to fully reverse the ringing of a bell or the imparting of Information to another (ie. one can neither "unring" a bell nor "ungive" Information).51 Thus, all that it is possible to achieve is the restoration of the Victim's Lifetime Happiness Value to the same net level as it would have been had the Violation not occurred. These considerations make it clear that:

  1. Payment must be made in a form satisfactory to the Victim, and
  2. To optimally maintain the Social Meta-Needs, any definition of Restitution must include payment for all initial Violational Harm, all continuing Happiness losses during the period of non-restoration and all costs to the Victim incurred by the Process of gaining full restoration of his Lifetime Happiness.

Although the justice ethic of total Restitution by the Violator to the Victim is sound, it is clear that there will be times when it cannot be satisfied because the Violator is incapable of providing the requisite Value, because the Victim is dead, or because the Victim or his Property is otherwise irreversibly Injuredor, respectively, Damaged in such a manner that no amount of Value is sufficient to restore his Lifetime Happiness (ie. the Harm is essentially UnRestitutable). In the case of a living Victim, if the Harm is UnRestitutable, the Violator becomes an essential debtor to the Victim unless and until he (the Victim) Decides differently or the Violator dies. In the case of a dead Victim, those individuals who were Connected with the Victim and who Value him are the only ones whose Lifetime Happiness can be restored and they are the ones who then determine the Restitution amount and become the receivers of payment by the Violator (again possibly including UnRestitutable debt).52

The Social Contract

A Social Contract is a Valid Contract Executed by all Full Members of a Society which contains a set of definitions, Stipulations and Procedures that guide the creation and provide a formal structure for the stable maintenance of the Social Meta-Needs of those who Execute that Contract. An optimal Social Contract contains only the minimum set of such Stipulations and Procedures neccessary for that purpose. An optimal Social Contract thereby creates a Social Environment with minimal Constraints and Choice Alterations in which each individual human can optimally increase his Lifetime Happiness based on his current and future Available Actions. I have called my own version of such a Social Contract the Natural Social Contract because I think that it constitutes the minimal set of Stipulations and Procedures that are necessary to obtain the Social Meta-Needs required by the common nature of human beings. This means that each human who agrees with and Executes the Natural Social Contract will have the best possibility to optimally increase his Lifetime Happiness at the same time as and in concert with all the other Executors.

I am convinced that full human Liberty and greatly increased human Freedom can only be effectively achieved within a Society whose Members have all actually and Permittedly Executed such a Social Contract. In the beginning such individuals will need to be those who understand and embrace the implications of the Social Meta-Needs paradigm, but as the Freeman Society grows and the greater Benefits of such methods of Personal InterAction become clear, those who merely learn to practice its methods will join and additionally contribute to the generation of more Freedom for all.

The practical implementation of the Social Meta-Needs paradigm with a Social Contract required the creation of a considerable number of new concepts for defining and guiding Social order. While I have initially partially explained these new concepts within annotations to the Natural Social Contract (which, in total, are already almost of book length), there is a need for separate documents fully elucidating them.

Unfortunately, even a Society of Executors of an optimal Social Contract will still have their Social Environment continue to be distorted and suboptimal with respect to what is possible in Reality until those who live within it are free from Violation by those outside of it. The purpose of the Self-Sovereign Individual Project is, therefore, not only to encourage and promote the creation of such a Society, but also, by slowly enlarging it, to peacefully and gradually reduce the amount of external Violation that reduces its optimal functioning.

In summary, the Natural Social Contract is a formal minimal implementation of the Social Meta-Needs, which, as I state in my introductory remarks in the first annotation to it, creates "a naturally ordered and stabilized Society of Self-Sovereign Individuals who are minimally Constrained and maximally Free to increase their Lifetime Happiness, which necessarily includes being minimally UnRestitutably Harmed".
Please join me in making such a Society become a Reality.

Social Preferencing

In order for each of the Members of a Society to be optimally enabled to increase his Lifetime Happiness, in the same manner as, and for exactly the same reasons for which a potential purchaser needs to ascertain, assess and Evaluate the Attributes of any product or service in order to Decide whether or not to Initiate a Connection with, become Involved with and then Exchange Value with the Owner of the product or provider of the service (ie. to purchase it), so does that Member of Society also need to ascertain, assess and Evaluate the Personal Social Characteristics of another Member of Society in order to Decide whether or not and to what extent he wishes to Initiate a Connection, to become Involved with and to Exchange Personal Values53 with that other person.

Information about each Member's Evaluation of the Social Actions of others, communicated by means of an efficiently implemented method of Social Preferencing (also describable as Rational Actions of discrimination) can, thus, be seen as the natural effector of the self-ordering process of people-interaction Choices in a free Society in precisely the same manner as Information about goods and services is the natural effector of the self-ordering process of Choices of goods and services in a free market.

Logically, Social Preferencing can be defined as the Category of human Social ReActions to those Social Actions of others in Society which do not necessarily reduce the self-ordered stability of the Social Environment (the Social Meta-Needs) needed for maximal Lifetime Happiness production by each individual human, but about which (Social Actions of others) the ReActor wishes to communicate the subjective effect, positive or negative, on his Lifetime Happiness - ie. to communicate his positive or negative Evaluation of such Action. However, Social Preferencing is only a part of what is necessary to achieve the Social Meta-Needs, since just as the purchase Choices of goods and services requires the prior establishment of definitions and Entitlements to Property, and methods of dealing with Actions by others Responsibly Harming such Property, so also does the contribution of Social Preferencing to the Social Meta-Needs require the mutual agreement by Members of Society to a Social Contract establishing definitions of Property in its various forms and specifying methods of dealing with Responsible Harm, both in a more optimal manner than in current society.54

The Stipulations of the Natural Social Contract Requiring that full Identifying Information, and other Information Searchably Linked to it, be Publicly available (on a communications medium accessible by all - like the current Internet), which Requirement is logically antecedent to any means for communicating an Evaluation of a Party to that Social Contract, are merely the first steps and the minimum essential elements of the strong implementation of the openness and fluidity of Personal Character Information, which is crucial to achieve adequate and effective Social Preferencing. Once the reasons for this openness and fluidity of Personal Character Information are clearly understood, people will want to keep as much Information about themselves as possible available to one another, since doing so will bolster the credibility and solidity of their personal reputations and make Connecting to them more attractive to others. It is unfortunate that most people in current society are unlikely to understand this; at least until the ability of current governments to use personal information for coercive purposes has greatly diminished.

Strong Social Preferencing clearly requires full identification of each person in Society and the availability of a Public repository of Personal Character Information about each to which other people will Searchably Link their reports of both positive behaviors - ones that the reporter thinks will be likely to promote or enable an increase in the Lifetime Happiness of himself and/or all humans, and negative behaviors - ones that the reporter thinks will be likely to reduce the Lifetime Happiness of himself and/or all humans. Such reports will exclude those defined as Violations only after a Social Contract is Executed by a given person, since then details of any Violations related to that person will already be Publicly available per its Stipulations. Examples of such negative but Non-Violational behavior which would be a natural part of such Social Preferencing reports are: continuing to Possess Stolen Property, aiding and abetting Violators, not returning Value for UnRequested Benefits that one clearly Values,55 or simply being verbally abusive to others. A person could post descriptions of such behavior in his own area of the Internet (paid for by himself, of course), with a link to the online Personal Character Information of the person about whom he is reporting.

Strong Social Preferencing can thus function as a kind of rating system with respect to both positive and negative behaviors of one person by all others who have interacted with him in any manner. But note that Social Preferencing would be a completely open and specific rating system, with the rater (necessarily also fully identified) also liable to be negatively rated to the extent that his ratings are at odds with the ratings of others and/or are clearly untrue. In this manner the subjective evaluations of a person by others would in the end become a determined value, exactly as the subjective evaluations by those buying in the marketplace of goods and services becomes the determined value of any good or service.
Read more about Social Preferencing.

Concluding Remarks

This treatise has introduced a new paradigm, Social Meta-Needs, on which to base the operation of a Society of total Liberty and highest possible Freedom. I have strongly argued that this new paradigm, although radically different, is far superior than any previously used, where superior is defined to mean that each member of Society is better enabled to optimally increase his Lifetime Happiness. The Social Meta-Needs paradigm has been shown to require the method of strong Social Preferencing for its implementation, and to be greatly aided by (if possibly not to actually require) the use of a Social Contract to which all Members of Society are Parties. While both of these implementing methods are also radically different than anything that has previously been held to be acceptable and/or practical for a Society, once again strong arguments have been made why these methods are not only practical, but are eminently acceptable since together they provide critical support for each Member of Society to compossibly and optimally increase his Lifetime Happiness.
Please join me in making such a Society become a Reality.



* The use of the term meta-needs within this treatise is completely independent of, and distinct from its use in the theory of behavioral motivation by the psychologist Abraham Maslow.

1. This would normally be called rules of Social order, but since that word could be misunderstood as necessarily implying some ruling authority, particularly where used to describe a Society, I decided to use Process instead of rule.

2. Merriam-Webster Unabridged Online Dictionary (subscription required)

3. For extensions to the standard definition of life that apply to various states of human life impairment ultimately including death, see: States of Life and Death Defined by Paul Wakfer.

4. Webster's Universal College Dictionary 1997 Random House, p269.

5. For other descriptions of The I and the non-I see the Introductory Annotation to the Natural Social Contract and Essential Collectivism in Language: its Effects on Rational Thinking by Paul Wakfer.

6. The internal communication bandwidth of the human brain has been estimated to be at most 150 Gbit/s (Laughlin SB, Sejnowski TJ., Communication in neuronal networks, Science. 2003 Sep 26;301(5641):1870-4, and Attwell D, Laughlin SB., An energy budget for signaling in the grey matter of the brain., J Cereb Blood Flow Metab., 2001 Oct;21(10):1133-45., whereas the brain's sensory bandwidth is estimated to be at most 100 Mbit/s (see the Simulation Argument by Nick Bostrom - note that I reject the conclusion of his article even though his bandwidth calculation is sound).

7. Whether or not this is true on the quantum scale of matter is still an open question. However, to the extent it is not, one must question whether the non-measurable parameter involved is actually an Attribute of the Existent in question at all, as that concept normally means.

8. Thus the rate of change of the Value of any Attribute of an Existent is philosophically supportable as also being an Existent, and this is true even if it is not possible currently to measure that Attribute and thus to know the Value of its rate of change.

9. This also implies that the Values of many Environmental Attributes remain within certain bounds during the Lifetime of the particular life-form under consideration. Survival of the species of which the life-form is a member would require even more Environmental stability since changes would then need to remain bounded sufficiently long for the species to adapt to the new average Values of the Environmental Attributes.

10. Even though until the 20th century the average Lifespan of humans was less than 1/2 the maximum Lifespan, one should not conclude that the human Environment was not stable until then, because the very high mortality during childbirth and childhood contributed significantly to the reduction of average human Lifespan. Thus, by discounting such early life mortality in civilized periods (which does not relate to my stability criterion) and looking back to uncivilized eras, and particularly to pre-civilization about which archaeological analysis has shown that life was "nasty, short and brutish", it is clear that my stability criterion does fit human circumstances.

11. By normal functioning I mean that the metabolism, growth, reproduction, and some form of responsiveness or adaptability required for life are capable of functioning in accord with the usual or healthy observed nature of the particular life-form.

12. I use Happiness as the general term for all possible final ends for human Actions. For a full definition of these ends including a discussion of a theoretical method by which one might compute one's Happiness see the Natural Social Contract Annotation on Happiness. That optimally increasing his Lifetime Happiness is both the normal functioning and the life purpose for a human individual is determined by observation of the Rational Actions of healthy human individuals, ie. those Actions that are necessarily human in nature in the sense that taken together they distinguish the species homo sapiens sapiens from all others. Life purpose is elucidated more, later in this treatise.

13. This is not to say that humans will not Benefit (say by becoming more inventive) because of sudden changes in Environmental conditions. It is only maintained that, in general, changes will be more advantageous if any large and/or sudden occurrence of them is under human Control or prediction rather than coming by chance.

14. For example, one can alter the average Lifespan of a group of laboratory animals to any lower Value desired by simply adjusting the concentration of a certain toxin in its food.

15. Benefit for any life-form is defined as anything that contributes to its normal functioning. For a non-human life-form, normal functioning constitutes merely survival and procreation, but for a human, it is the process of optimally increasing his Lifetime Happiness (for a simple definition see footnote 12).

16. Gibson G. Population genomics: finding the variants of mass disruption. Curr Biol. 2003 Dec 2;13(23):R901-3, Review Article.

17. Differences in genetic polymorphisms constitute the major inherent biological differences between humans.

18. "Perhaps the most surprising insights emerging from the research on twins, siblings and adopted children, however, involves the role of shared environments in determining cognitive abilities (and also personalities). It has long been assumed that growing up in the same home environment would cause siblings to become more similar over time, but precisely the opposite seems to be the case. .. More precisely, while shared home environments seem to have relatively large power in explaining similarities among siblings in early childhood, they lose this power as siblings grow up." (page 31) in: The Impact of Family and Community Resources on Student Outcomes by Thomas Nechyba, Patrick McEwan and Dina Older-Aguilar.

19. While it should be obvious, perhaps it needs to be stated that all InterActions of individual humans are examples of Exchange of Value of one form or another. This is clear from the simple thought that one person would not spend resources of time InterActing with another person unless he were thereby gaining something that he considers to be of Value to himself.

20. The empirical doctrine that the determining motive of every individual Action is the perception that, among all currently Available Actions, that particular Action will achieve the greatest increase or the least decrease of the Actor's Lifetime Happiness. For an interesting discussion of psychological egoism based on a definition importantly distinct from the one which I have just given (my own), see: The Truth in Psychological Egoism.

21. "the ethical doctrine that individual self-interest is the valid end of all Action" - Merriam-Webster Unabridged Online Dictionary - egoism (subscription required).

22. Ethical imperatives are commands concerning human behavior usually containing the words "ought" or "should" - eg. one ought (or ought not) to take Action Y. The imperative nature is related to the fact that no direct reason or purpose is given for the command, no precondition is given for the statement and the behavior is not done in order to cause something else that is desirable. In addition, an ethical imperative is generally seen as something that one just simply "knows" in the sense that it has been clearly "revealed" to the person by some unidentified and even unidentifiable mechanism. Often this results in an elitist separation between those for whom the ethical imperative is revealed knowledge and those for whom it is not. An ethical imperative is a kind of categorical imperative Encyclopaedia Britannica from Encyclopaedia Britannica Online Premium Service, as described by Immanuel Kant. It contrasts with the term hypothetical imperative (ibid), which is merely the action Y that one should take in order to have X come about, as in: "if one wants X to happen then one ought to do Y". It is my contention that categorical imperatives are nonexistent mischievous fictions, and only hypothetical imperatives have logical meaning.

23. Compossible - literally together possible - means that all Members of a given Category can have the same Attribute at the same time. However in philosophy the term is generally applied only to a Category of humans and to Attributes, Processes or Effects of certain of their InterActions.

24. For Selected Internet Resources on Ethical Egoism and A Bibliographical Survey of Ethical Egoism see:

25. I use the term Violator (instead of criminal, since the existence of a crime necessarily implies the existence of a State) for someone who has been found guilty of Duress, Responsible Harm, or Breach of a Valid Contract as those terms are unambiguously defined and fully interrelated in the Natural Social Contract.

26. A breach, reduction, distortion or partial negation of the Social Meta-Needs causes a destabilization of the optimal Social Environment and occurs when an Action of one or more Full Members of the Society Violates one or more other Full Members or limits the dissemination of Information about any Social Existent.

27. Recall from the introduction that the purpose of this treatise is to analyze what are the optimal Social conditions under which each well-Intentioned, but imperfect individual can optimally increase his Lifetime Happiness by InterActing with other such individuals. Only after that is accomplished will it be appropriate to examine how such Social conditions need to be modified to deal with Intentional Violators. While in current Society, social disguise is seen as necessary in order to Protect oneself from those who would Intentionally Violate one (and many incorrectly think it also Beneficially inhibits the discriminatory Evaluation of their Personal Social Characteristics by others), Social Meta-Needs theory clearly implies that since this undermines the entire Process of full human Value Exchange (by hiding important Information that individuals need to make Decisions regarding InterPersonal Relationships), other methods must be found for such Protection (but only the Rational portion relating to those who would Violate). Moreover, social disguise is not effective in Protecting anyone from the biggest Intentional Violators of all, the ruling government and its agencies of regulation and enforcement, since they have the legal and technological power to largely circumvent it.

28. For an interview with a prominent scientist who thinks this is true and is actively working to make it happen see: David Stipp in Fortune Magazine June 14, 2004 -- This Man Would Have You Live a Really, Really, Really, Really Long Time. and also Ker Than for April 2005 - Hang in There: The 25 Year Wait for Immortality
Here are some other references in the same direction:
Miller -- Extending life: scientific prospects and political obstacles
Harris -- Essays on science and society: Intimations of immortality
Aubrey D.N.J. de Grey, Editor -- Strategies for Engineered Negligible Senescence: Why Genuine Control of Aging May Be Foreseeable

29. More strictly, if the likelihood-adjusted Estimated Harm from an Action is less than its likelihood-adjusted Estimated Benefit, then it is in the Rational self-interest of the Estimator to take the Action. Such a Value judgment cannot be discounted because Value judgment is necessarily always subjective and highly variable, even when fully Rational, due to human uniqueness. For analysis of such Estimations in great detail see the Natural Social Contract Annotation about Choice.

30. For a definition of Property, how entitlement to it is established and maintained, and thus how humans can operate with it in a fully compossible manner, see the Natural Social Contract.
"Only a system of private property and ownership in the means of production permits coherent economic decision-making, where the question of what to produce is linked to the question of how to produce. Any system that moves away from a free market is a recipe for economic chaos." from Proof That Socialism Cannot Work by Dan Mahoney.
"..the border between Haiti and the Dominican Republic convincingly demonstrates the essential role private property, which is the defining characteristic of capitalism, has in the preservation of natural resources. Haitian land ownership rights have always been tenuous, to say the least. Not so for the Dominican Republic. The stark contrast along the border of the two countries mirrors a stark contrast in land ownership rights." from Preservation and Private Property by James E. McClure and T. Norman Van Cott.
"The lesson of Ukara, in contrast to rural Africa generally, is simple. When resources are finite (and when are they not?), only the institution of private property, unfettered by 'chiefs' and 'ruling elites,' can produce healthy families, tree-lined homesteads, population stability, sufficient food, and the other criteria that are sometimes lumped together as 'happiness.' Central planning produces treeless wastelands, farmers who are granted 'use' of land they do not own (and thus cannot leave to their children), famine, water shortage, etc." from The Lesson of Ukara by E. Berton Spence.
For an example of the efficacy of private property in modern China see: Land Rights in China: Facts, Fictions, and Issues by Scott Rozelle, Loren Brandt, Li Guo and Jikun Huang. (Former full working paper no longer available online.)

31. This is probably why many violations have come to be regarded by modern societies as "crimes against humanity". However, the criteria for deciding just which violations are such collective harm are not those that I have used or needed to use in my arguments within this treatise. In fact, the lack of rational criteria for such decisions (as well as lack of consideration of Restitution for the Victim) is at the root of the gross distortion of ethics and justice found in most current legal systems.

32. I have placed "rights" within quotes here and throughout this paper, because, as will soon be made clear, I am convinced that it is an invalid and non-existent concept (except when used in contracts - see footnote 33).

33. The usage of the term right within private agreements and contracts, in the sense of a correct and valid entitlement according to the terms of the contract mutually accepted by all parties, appears to be unambiguous, meaningful and useful. However, because right is so ambiguous and logically problematical in the vernacular language, I think it would be best if it were replaced by entitlement, even in contracts.

34. While contemplating how certain famous historical thinkers, who appear so reasonable in other ways, could adopt such a clearly inconsistent notion, it occurred to me that perhaps it was seen as a necessary practical step to counteract such appeals by rulers as the divine right of kings and by ecclesiastics of divine revelation. If "rights" were Attributes that God had bestowed upon all humans, then it would clearly be a violation of God's wishes for any ruler or other authority to not respect and accept such "rights".

35. Thus, the principle of optimally increasing one's total Lifetime Happiness appears to be a more powerful guiding principle for human Decision making and Acting than that of rational self-interest, even where the latter has been consistently used within works about the philosophy of human action.

36. Note that in this case least possible can only be according to the Estimation of the Violator, who is afterwards held fully Responsible for the consequences of his Action based on that Estimation.

37. For details see the Natural Social Contract, searching all occurrences of Breach.

38. For a detailed exposition of examples of necessary limitations and conflicts of "rights", including a critique of that exposition, see: The Machinery of Freedom: Guide to a Radical Capitalism, Ch. 41 by David D. Friedman.

39. This is not to deny the place of the free market in providing alternate Social Contracts and all the specialized services of Universal Communications Networks, Real Estate Entitlements and Covenants, Contracts, Trials, Restitution companies, etc. that any free society operating under a Social Contract and with strong Social Preferencing will need.

40. I use Entitle in the sense of granting, Permitting and enabling certain Actions to be taken. See also a detailed explanation of Entitle and Entitlement in the Annotation for the definitions related to Contract.

41. The necessity of Restitution is further explained and justified in the remainder of this treatise. For additional explanation and a complete practical system that accomplishes this, see the Natural Social Contract and its annotations.

42. The latter will be addressed in the penultimate section of this treatise, on Social Preferencing.

43. See the ideas relating to Connection in the Natural Social Contract.

44. For information on praxeology and its major proponents see and the Ludwig von Mises Institute.

45. In particular see David Friedman's book: Law's Order (draft).

46. I have used the terms Violator and Victim in this treatise even though, until a Determination by a Trial, those states are only Alleged.

47. The notion that any human values can be objectively determined should be highly suspect by anyone familiar with the Austrian School of Economics. That many who accept this viewpoint for economics have been so blind to the same point with respect to the human evaluation of harm from violations is both incredible and tragic.

48. See the Natural Social Contract and its annotations for the Requirements concerning "openness" that are for the specific purpose of promoting Decision making that is not distorted and limited by lack of adequate Information about the Personal Social Characteristics of individuals with whom one wishes to become Involved. Because of the Social Preferencing promoted and enabled by these Requirements, this full and open Personal disclosure will provide the necessary incentives and disincentives to promote honest, reasonable appraisal by the Victim of the Harm incurred by a Violator and the consequent Restitution Requested and Required.

49. For an interesting example of a work of social science fiction which illustrates a society where it is factually possible to determine if someone is speaking truthfully or not see: The Truth Machine by James L. Halperin.

50. See the Happiness Annotation to the Natural Social Contract for full details of my approach to the multi-fold aspects, the states and the Evaluative summation of Happiness.

51. This Attribute of Information (that it can be given but not removed) bears directly on the issue of why the current society's notion of "intellectual property" is considered to be as self-contradictory and impractical as is the notion concerning "rights". Instead Information is handled under the Natural Social Contract by the definitions and Stipulations regarding acquisition, Ownership, Possession, Control, Exchange and Abandonment.

52. For the details of how these situations can be resolved in practice see the Natural Social Contract.

53. A Personal Value is actually a type of service, but one which is not actively priced for one or all of the following reasons:
a) the amount of resources required to provide the service is small,
b) the return of Value completing the Exchange may not be consummated at the same time as the initial Value is received, and
c) the Values received by the parties to the Exchange may change considerably after their initial transmittal/receipt as each party continues to ReEvaluate the effects on his Lifetime Happiness, often necessitating compensatory adjustments of Value returned by one party or both.

54. I have designed the Natural Social Contract to effect and optimally accomplish just such "establishments and specifications".

55. For a detailed understanding of why such behavior should be considered negative and the meaning of the underlying notion of Value for Value, see the definition of UnRequested Benefit and its annotation. Much more will soon be forthcoming about the Value for Value concept on a new website under preparation.