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We need to quantify freedom then we can determine how much we want and when we have arrived at that amount.
Anarchy would be at one end and total control at the other. Too little freedom is not good but too little is no good either.
The scale could be applied overall and to specific issues
such as gun control, to little and you ban guns totally to much and you end up with the "home howitzer" and "grenade-o-matic".
This scale could generate an overall rating for a society as a whole, this could be used to ensure you have the most possible freedom yet can remain a stable society.
I'm new here so first allow me to ask if adding to my post is ok for replies?
DrBob and lewisgirl
Thanks for the thoughts they remind me a little of psychohistory in Asimov's "Foundation" trilogy.
Let me try and add a little to the above, the quanta would be basic universal freedoms such as those set forth in the original US constitution (give or take a couple). Each would be assigned an ideal value. Basic and simple and common would be the key words, to keep the variables as few in number as possible as the value of one would affect the others.
On a smaller scale a liberty quotient for individual issues could be derived by applying the same template.
I think this particular idea belongs at half-empty [thumbwax, Oct 01 2002, last modified Oct 17 2004]
||Ardd: I'm not going to mark this for deletion as there is an idea here: a measurable scale of liberty. Unfortunately the idea isn't really explained or explored. Cut to the chase, explain your idea more fully and you'll probably get a better reception.
||I doubt that you could do this with a single, straight line scale. You'd need some sort of multi-axis scale with one axis for 'Legal Restrictions', one for 'Social Restrictions', and one for 'Financial Restrictions' at the very least.
||DrBob is on the same lines as I was thinking - after I realised that the use of the word 'Quantum' in the title is probably incorrect.
To develop my venerable (!) friend's take on this, I would suggest that to encompass Legal, Social (or Societal), and Financial aspects of liberty, you might put them in a Venn diagram. You could do this for more than three areas, of course, bringing in multiple dimensions to the concept of 'liberty'. In that sense, you might need to introduce quanta. Let me explain: to be able to create a multi-dimensional model of a society, you need to define the society to which you refer. You may be thinking "The U.S.A." - to try to define this as a single society (and I am no sociologist <shudder>) is probably a weighty task. So let's take "Georgia, USA" - still this is a large, heterogeneous body of people. Now, since for any change of a variable (such as religious persuasion, just to take the first example that pops into my head), many other variables may shift boundaries of acceptability or become 'no' where previously 'yes', you may be able to define these as 'quanta' where one dimension is set with a range of truths dependent on the state of some or all of the other quanta in the system.
But I am no sociologist, nor mathematician, nor physicist, so I may be using terms which I'm really not qualified to bandy around like this. But it wasn't *complete* gibberish in my head, nearly, but not quite.
||I like this bit from the top, "Too little freedom is not good but too little is no good either." Doesn't mean you're getting a croissant.
||Google "Political Compass."
||The unit for freedom has to be the bell (as in Liberty Bell) - so 0.1 units would be a decibell.