SandelTV on Libertarianism

An episode of Harvard philosopher Michael Sandel’s fantastic television series Justice takes up libertarian political philosophy.  Now, up front: this series is a minor miracle and, if this were a classical philosophy thought experiment, I’d trade all my cherished original comic pages to see this show supplant Dancing with the Stars in the Zeitgeist. Sandel gives as reasonably sympathetic a summary of the libertarian view of rights as anyone could expect in the time he’s got.  But you also end up watching long stretches and thinking: Yes, great, an A-list Harvard philosopher can smack around undergraduates with inchoate libertarian instincts; good for him. Even this spectacularly thoughtful forum is not really capable of giving the competing ideas under discussion a suitably thorough airing.  This is not—God forbid—another tedious kvetch about either media or academic bias, as Sandel is clearly trying to give a philosophy with which he’s out of sympathy equal time.  But it does suggest a reason to open-source the conversation.  Anyone want to take up particular points on YouTube?  Ping me on Twitter as @normative; at my obnoxious sole discretion, I’ll circulate the strong ones.