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On the Importance of Rules

Updated: May 16

If there were no rules, there would be no cooperation. Without cooperation, there would be no advanced technology. Without advanced technology, there would be much less humans in the world. Why, then, despise the authorities, if the authorities are there to preserve civil order (regardless of whether or not they are too oppressive)?

Without laws, there would only be small bands of people, controlled by their leaders not through law but by prowess and intimidation. There might also be bands of people bonded by friendship, or even groups of people led through religious manipulation of grandiose prophecies, told by delusional con-men. There would be no security beyond the capability of your band's self-defense. And with no money, finance would be useless in a world vacant of corporations and safe trade.

In conclusion, rules and authorities are necessary for cooperation, advanced technology, and a safe and prosperous society. We should not despise them, even if we disagree with their policies or actions.

The thing is, if we didn't have any rules at all, we would still be in the Stone Age today. Without limitations, there is no motivation to do anything, which would prevent larger societies from existing and being governed. Without government, there would be no large-scale growth from a large-scale potential. In other words, no matter how much we despise the cops for giving us a fine, they are, in the end, the frontlines against internal anarchy.

Even if there weren't any rules, they would eventually have to exist in this parallel world. They would be necessary to preserve and grow the membership in the many small bands, and to motivate said members to keep their loyalty to the same band and to contribute to it. This could be done through fear of punishment or through hope of justice being served to traitors, thieves, and other people who can easily become targets of vengeance. They would beg for redemption and serve as an example to others to not commit the same deeds against the bodies of authority.

No matter how much you would rather be more spontaneous in your actions, law is inevitable for things to go smoothly, whether they are written or accepted. This is why, even though I dislike the norms, I still recognize their existence as socially-limiting, unwritten, unofficial rules of conduct.

The inevitability of laws being made to maintain and grow small bands into communities would eventually lead to the same world we have now: a world governed by local and global law enforcement organizations, to preserve the status quo and to persecute those who have violated it, whether intentionally or by mistake. With the growth of communities comes the greater extraction of collective potential, leading to advanced technology in various fields. This has, in turn, brought us mostly free from the danger of premature death. However, it can also bring us much closer to it once said laws are tremendously broken, especially the global ones. After all, execution for violating laws still exists in some parts of the world, including in some American states.

Therefore, it can be concluded that rules, even if unwanted, were, are, and will be crucial for the development and preservation of humanity, whether or not these rules were just or non-benevolent. If there was a theoretical "purge," where all laws were temporarily abolished, society as a whole would devolve significantly due to the deaths of countless people.

Finally, if I were able to work and had more physical and emotional prowess, I would consider becoming a police officer, just like my childhood fantasies of being an Imperial Stormtrooper. The thought of enforcing the law and reducing crime was something I enjoyed fantasizing about, as that would entail contributing much to the entity I would have served.

Imagine the legal persecution of criminals across your nation, to see them gone and thus prevent many crimes, is something that I would consider to be very impactful in a job. If you can, consider being an agent of justice; you will bring much help to your state in its fight for security, safety, and order.

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Tomasio A. Rubinshtein, Philosocom's Founder & Writer

I am a philosopher from Israel, author of several books in 2 languages, and Quora's Top Writer of the year 2018. I'm also a semi-hermit who has decided to dedicate his life to writing and sharing my articles across the globe. Several podcasts on me, as well as a radio interview, have been made since my career as a writer. More information about me can be found here.

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