Moldbug was about formalism. Which is funny because I associate “formalism” with Chomskyian linguistics. The idea that language can be modeled in a quasi mathematical form. Let’s say that didn’t really work out.
Moldbug’s was political Formalism. Give everyone an official title of what he already owns. Let us say it how it is and not lie anymore. Good idea. I wonder how you formalize this?
Sailer writes how New York City is not actually run by its mayor; there’s a sleazy bunch of “consultants” with a pipe to rich donors, who force any political candidate to hire this consultants in exchange for their donations. This includes the mayor, attorneys, and everybody who needs money to run a campaign in NYC. Guys like this.
Officially there’s a mayor, who’s supposed to run things, but he’s not very smart, at any rate he needed money for his campaign and he wasn’t very good at getting it. So he outsourced that to the free market, and the free market provided. Now there’s a bunch of sleazy middlemen trafficking with influences from here to there.
How do you formalize this? Who’s in charge? Who will be in charge tomorrow?
Not that this is somewhat particular to NYC, but not necessarily so. Is Obama in charge? Not really. He is the puppet of some conquistador consultant? Probably not. Who is? That’s a good question.
Ancient China was very adamant that there should be one guy in charge. The Emperor. “The realm cannot be one day without a ruler”. The theory was good, but the Emperor had a mother. And Ancient China was also very adamant about sons being obedient to their parents. So the Emperor Must Rule, but he must be obedient to Mom. Which is why there so many Empress Dowager.
The Western conception of power is different. We have people on top of the pyramid, and they’re “responsible”. Which means when something we choose to remove them when something goes wrong, even when the guy wasn’t really involved in the process. But the process is very complicated. How to formalize that? It isn’t any easier than formalizing language, like Chomsky. And that didn’t work out.