Universism and Private Law

Universism states that any action’s ultimate rightness or wrongness can only be determined by those involved in the action and that there is no universal morality and no moral authority. This brings up the question that in crimes, can only the criminal and victim decide what is right or wrong? Click here for an article on private law that has an answer for this.

Private law is a concept where people submit themselves to the “jurisdiction” of a private judge. Cynics of the concept dismiss this because the accussed would not willingly do this.

However, this glib dismissal overlooks the fact that most disputes in modern commercial society are not between an ?obvious? innocent and an ?obvious? malefactor. Rather, it is often the case that both parties to a dispute genuinely believe themselves to be in the right, and would be happy to make their cases in front of a disinterested third party.

I don’t think in practice this concept of private law would be able to hold, particularly under the anarchist environment that the author presents it in. However, the Objections section of the article and the following paragraph is applicable to laws and justice in general as it relates to Universism and enforcement of morality.

One major objection to such a system is that there wouldn?t be one uniform set of laws applicable to everyone. So what? If orthodox Jews want to have a rabbi apply the Mosaic Law to their disputes, while atheist libertarians want Stephan Kinsella to apply The Ethics of Liberty to their disputes, why shouldn?t they be allowed to do this? Yes, ?bad laws? might be produced under anarchy, but people would not be subjected to them, or at least not nearly to the extent that they are forced to submit to bad government legislation. (In the same way, bad books will be produced under anarchy, but no one would be forced to read them.) In any event, under the government right now, there isn?t a uniform set of laws applied to everyone, so this objection is silly on its face.

One thought on “Universism and Private Law

  1. As described on Religious Tolerance, Universism is indeed free and democratic. However, this concept of “private justice”, as you describe it, sounds like anarcho-solipsism.

    Tellingly, you didn’t actually say that those quotes come from the Universism website. Where did it really come from? And why are you slandering Universism?

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