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Natural Social Contract Annotations

General Stipulations

The reader will only be able to understand the purpose and meaning of this annotation and its relationship to the Natural Social Contract (NSC), if s/he has first read the Introduction section of the NSC and its explanatory and elucidating annotation.

1) After

the Stipulations Section begins the Stipulations of Actions that the Parties Will Perform, of States that each Will Effect and of Entitlements each will gain, as a consequence of becoming Freemen. The Stipulations of the NSC are a little different than those of most other Contracts in that they are Symmetrical with respect to all Parties to the NSC. In other words, there is nothing that one Party is Entitled to gain or is Required to Perform or Effect that any other Party is not similarly Entitled or Required when in an equivalent Social situation. The first Stipulation to which an Executor of the NSC must Agree, is not to assume the Status of a Freeman until the NSC is Executed, Attested and Published together with full Identifying Information and all other Information that is Required of a Freeman to Publish and maintain in that State. In other words, the potential Freeman must fully Initialize hir Required potential Connection Attributes with other Freemen before s/he is Entitled to Act as a Freeman.

2) A Freeman Must Intend to not Violate any other Freeman. However, it is extremely important to note that this does not imply that s/he must do hir utmost (ie. everything s/he possibly can) to try not to Violate another Freeman. The reason for this (not being required to do hir utmost to not Violate others) is because a Freeman must have the direct increase of hir own Lifetime Happiness as hir priority goal and any effort to not Harm others will always reduce hir limited resources of time and thought for that goal. It is clear that in all Decisions regarding the expenditure of time there is a constant trade-off between various ways to gain Benefit or reduce loss (of which any Harm to others is one kind). Therefore, the optimal Action for a Freeman is to attempt to maximize the net gain to hir Lifetime Happiness of {the sum of all direct efforts to increase it times the probability of occurrence of each} minus {the sum of all Harms done to hir (including Restitutions that s/he will pay if s/he Violates another) times the probability of occurrence of each}.1 At this point the reader might profit from reviewing the details of the description of the Evaluation of Lifetime Happiness in the annotations about Happiness, and of making Choice Estimations in the annotations about Choice. This need to apportion one's scarce resources of time and thought so that one's Lifetime Happiness is optimally increased, leads directly to the next Stipulation in the NSC.

However, the phrasing of Stipulation A.2 is actually and importantly stronger than merely a Freeman's continuing Intention never to Violate another Freeman. A Freeman does not want any Violation to occur whether or not s/he is Involved with either party to a Violation. The reason for this is because a Freeman knows that any Violation Harms hirself because it reduces the Lifetime Happiness of some other Freeman and tends to reduce and/or destabilize the operating efficiency of the Freeman Society. That is, all Violations will reduce hir ability to increase hir own Lifetime Happiness. Therefore, not only does a Freeman constantly Act to prevent hirself from Violating other Freemen and from being Violated by them, but s/he also is constantly attempting to prevent all Violations from occuring. For the reasons given above, all such concerns can be given only limited resources as the Freeman deems appropriate to optimally increasing hir own Lifetime Happiness.

3) A Freeman knows that s/he is the Responsible Agent for all hir own Actions. This is one of those simple and self-evident statements which has enormous effects when its widest implications are understood. The result is that a Freeman wants to be both the recipient of the major Benefits of hir Valuable Actions and at the same time wants to be fully Responsible for the negative Effects on hirself and others of hir Harmful Actions, whether they are due to incompetence or are merely accidental. Furthermore, s/he knows that there are no true accidents. Just as incompetence implies that s/he has not learned or is not practicing Adequate Control over hirself and hir Possessions, so an accident or even an Act of nature merely implies that s/he has not learned to sufficiently Control hir total environment - to prevent Reality from Harming hirself and others. On the other hand, as I have just explained in the last paragraph, the scarceness of time prevents even the most conscientious Freeman from doing everything possible to avoid incompetent behavior and prevent accidental occurrences. So a Freeman simply Estimates hir Choices as best s/he can and necessarily takes chances that some negative Events will occur. S/he makes up for this impossibility of perfection by being a Responsible Agent for all the Harm Events of which s/he is the Effective Cause because s/he knows that this is essential in order to optimally increase the Lifetime Happiness of all Freemen at the same time, which in turn is necessary in order to optimally increase hir own Lifetime Happiness. For a more detailed analysis see the essays Self-Responsibility and Social Order and Social Meta-Needs: A New Basis for Optimal Interaction.

4) Although every Freeman is the Responsible Agent for all hir Actions and for all hir Requirements under the NSC, s/he is still Entitled to employ an Agent to Act in hir place and actually Perform all Actions necessary to fulfill such Responsibilities and Requirements.

5) The nature of Reality is such that in order to prevent Harm, to survive, to maintain hirself and to optimally increase hir Lifetime Happiness a Freeman cannot remain passive but must continually Act. Just the simple need to maintain health and prevent dysfunction of body and mind due to prolonged lack of eating or drinking requires Action to obtain food and water. However, it is useful to separate all Existents, with respect to which a Freeman must Act to optimally increase hir Lifetime Happiness, into distinct Categories. The first are Existents that are neither other Freemen nor the Property of other Freemen. With respect to this Category of Existents, a Freeman is Entitled to do what s/he wants as long as hir Actions do not Violate another Freeman. In essence, "doing what s/he wants" with such a Category of Existents means that the Freeman either already Owns such Existents or takes Ownership of the Existent in question and attempts to Control it to hir purposes, just as with anything else that s/he Owns. The second Category of Existents that can affect a Freeman are other Freemen and their Property - the Category of Social Existents. With respect to Social Existents a Freeman is always Entitled to Protect and Defend any Social Existent under hir Ownership, Possession or Control from any Harm such other Social Existents may Effectively Cause, except where s/he has Permitted the Actions which Effectively Cause the Harm and has not Withdrawn such Permissions. (For details on the Requirement for Withdrawal of such Permission see Stipulation A.6 - explained in the next paragraph.) However a Freeman may not Intend to either Possess or Control Social Existents to which s/he is not Entitled, even for the purposes of Defense, unless s/he is convinced that were s/he not to do so, UnRestitutable Harm to hirself or hir Property would occur. For details see the definition of Defense, Stipulation C.7, Stipulation E.7 and their annotations.

6) While it should always be possible for one Freeman-A to give another Freeman-B Permission (either with or without a Valid Contract) to Act on himself (Freeman-A) in a manner that would otherwise be a Breach of the NSC (and such Permission is entirely allowed by the NSC), it makes no logical sense that such Permission can be Withdrawn in a manner such that the Available Actions of the Permitted Freeman-B do not allow him to not Violate the Freeman-A first giving and now Withdrawing Permission. One general method of ensuring this, which I had written in an earlier version of this Stipulation, would be to require that the Permitted Freeman-B must be allowed to terminate the Permitted activity with no greater effort expended than when s/he began it under Permission. However, since many variations on the meaning of "no greater effort" are imaginable depending on the particular circumstances of any Permitted situation, it was decided to omit any specific method of solution and to only require the logical necessity of ending the Permitted act without necessary Violation. Because of this, it is clearly always best to have a detailed arrangement for the termination of any Permitted activity, which termination arrangement is in fact Required under a Valid Contract.

7) Stipulation A.7 states that while a Freemen may have any sort of agreement with anyone that s/he wishes to have, s/he is only Entitled to have a Valid Contract Adjudicated by the NSC - ie. s/he is only Entitled to create a Case with respect to the Alleged Violation of a Valid Contract. Note that a Freeman-A is not forbidden to contract with another Freeman-B to Violate any third Freeman-C, but the NSC only states that any such agreement is not a Valid Contract. For example, while this Stipulation does not preclude a Freeman from purchasing Stolen Property, even if s/he knows that it was Stolen (nor does any other Stipulation of the NSC - that issue is resolvable only by Social Preferencing and the rules Egress Real Estate Owners regarding transportation of Stolen Property), it does preclude hir from hiring someone to commit Theft.

8) The purpose of Stipulation A.8 is simply to make it clear that Entitlements under any Valid Contract are not mandatory. In other words, a Freeman is not Required to make use of any Entitlements under the NSC or any other Valid Contract.

1. Curly brackets, { }, are used to make the logic of complex sentences and phrases clear.