NASA has recently discovered a planet that could have an environment that is stable for human life, and may have water on its surface. The planet has been named “Kepler-22b”.
Naturally, it led me to think about humans living on that planet, and how a society would be implemented. We would be starting from scratch, from the “state of nature”. There are many possibilities on what type of governance, if any at all, this planet could have.
If you were in charge of handling the creation of a human society on this new planet, what would your form of governance look like? Lockean? Marxist? Anarchy? A mix of multiple philosophies? For this scenario, assume that there are roughly 500,000 people on the planet, who have no preconceived notions of governance. Consider them a “blank slate” of people.
I would attempt to style the governance around Locke’s ideals, much like the original intent of the Founding Fathers when they constructed our Constitution. Personal liberties would flourish, and the government’s only function would be to ensure the protection of these liberties. I would also take aspects from two famous economists, Ludwig von Mises and Murray Rothbard. Von Mises and Rothbard are proponents of Austrian economics, which is a very “hands off” way of handling the economy. With only 500,000 people, the less government intervention in the economy the better. This would create the best environment for innovation, which is what a new society would greatly need.
Here’s a video of Thomas Woods, another famous Austrian economist, explaining his views on economic (Austrian) theory.
I don’t feel a Marxist theory would be a good fit for a new society, as there would be very little resources and structure to build a dominant central government off of. I also disagree with Hobbes’ theory on the state of nature. I feel that in a brand new setting such as this one, people would for the most part set aside their attempts for personal gain in order to establish the society for the greater good. They would recognize that by doing what is best for the new planet, they themselves will benefit more than if they only provided for themselves. It also helps that it is a relatively small group of people on the planet. If there were greater numbers, like 2 billion people, then there would be less collective cooperation due to the sheer amount of people.
I definitely don’t believe that a purely anarchist society would be successful, as there needs to be some kind of central authority to maintain order, just not too much of an authority.
To summarize, I would definitely try to implement a Lockean form of government, with limited government intervention in the economy to promote innovation, and the protection of individual rights.
Kepler-22b is in your hands. What would you do?
*Edited 12/7 at 7:30 PM