Saturday, April 05, 2003

The Limits of Common Sense in Inference and Decision

Of course, not all decisions can be the result of nothing more than common sense.

Democracy, or politics, exists because common sense is not enough.

Some conflicts in preferences and judgments can be resolved only through choice.

So we need politics.

Even in law.

But there must be limits to choice, democracy, and politics in law.

What are they?

Do we need truth-in-labeling for factual inference and proof?

Perhaps.

Hypocrisy may be a particularly grievous wrong in politics and law: it may offend deeply, it may demean, wound deeply.

Hence, if a legal decision maker wishes to push preferences rather than inferences, perhaps (s)he should say so -- or, in any event, confess ignorance.

What say you all?

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