Conduct and Contract
Political philosophy relies on three alternative types of theory to explain social order. The first, is order anarchy, built on the system of spontaneous Humean conventions. They are equilibria, self-enforcing or enforced by the participants' own contingent strategies and involve no central, specialised enforcer. The second type is ... contractarianism. This paper contends that its name is a misnomer hiding a redundancy. The third type is social contract theory, where there is unanimous commitment to submit to non-unanimous collective choices of certain kinds or reached by certain rules. The paper suggests that social contract theories serve mainly to render acquiescence in political obedience more palatable.
Original publication in
Rationality, markets, and morals: RMM 4 (2013), 53-60