HTM – Human Nature & Interaction

The nature of a human is to improve his life, to prosper, to attain subjective goals. Humans choose various ends as their goals and use various means to attain ends.

Humans enjoy the attainment of ends. Ends are most always achieved through action, though sometimes ends obtain through the independent actions of others. It is this enjoyment and its pursuit which defines the nature of humans.

Prosperity of human children depends largely on gifts received from their parents and other adults. Once a child grows into adulthood, his prosperity is mostly determined by his resources and abilities.

Humans think and act. You can’t tell for sure what a human thinks, but you can surely see his action. Human action is observable, while human thinking is hidden from view.

Action results from decisions in the human mind. Decisions to act are influenced by emotion, reason, and instinct. The thought process prior to action is object of psychological study. The action itself, and its consequences is the object of praxeological study.  Economics is the branch of praxeology dealing with exchange/trading, applying logic to the epistemological class of humans and their actions.

Humans have a highly evolved language and most are literate, able to read and write to some extent. Man is a social animal drawn to others for companionship and trade. Humans interact, banding together in groups. Large groups are called societies.

In isolation, a human can only prosper by his own production, but in a social situation exchange, coercion, and intervention become possible. Society enables subjugation.

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The energy behind all human action is the desire to prosper, which can be satisfied either independently or via interaction with others. Prosperity manifests in different ways, and may be achieved via different means. Production and voluntary trade are the chief means among ethical humans, while theft and subjugation are the chief means among those unethical. Economics is the study of exchanges among humans.

Capitalism is the mechanism of trade among humans. The name arises from capital, the tools, man-made factors of production. All commodities are produced by some combination of land, labor, and capital. Multiple exchanges make a market, and multiple markets make an economy.

Competition is the magic of capitalism, naturally yielding lower prices and higher quality for a large variety of products. It is spontaneous, the very opposite of planned intervention.

Intervention is forceful, planned control of human living and trading. Examples include, taxation, licensure, regulation, zoning and other statutes which control human lives. The UN Agenda 21 is blatant intervention.

The degree of control is spread over a continuum where the poles are Free Market – absence of intervention, and Control Market – total intervention. Intervention diminishes competition. The differences in polar outcomes are easily identified.

Free Market Control Market
Increases general prosperity of  productive humans Increases selective prosperity of political humans
Products exchanged have higher quality and a lower price Products exchanged have lower quality and higher price
Outcomes are spontaneously determined by the market participants Outcomes are determined by plan of the rulers
Prosperity obtained using peaceful means, voluntary exchange Prosperity obtained using political means, intervention and coerced exchange

Perhaps the single most valuable truth which emerges from the study of economics is the characteristics of valuation. Value can only be determined whenever an exchange occurs. Value is subjective, and can only be measured ordinally. This completely discredits the concept a of a social welfare function, used to justify intervention.