From libertarian Michael A. LaFerrara:
Ben Shapiro asks, “Where Does Evil Come From?,” and lists four basic ingredients for evil. Number four is “Sadism”, an ingredient for sure but which I’ll set aside for the sake of this post. It is the top three that I want to focus on. Citing Roy Baumeister’s book Evil: Inside Human Violence And Cruelty, Shapiro lists these roots:
1. Instrumentality: The notion that evil acts aren’t evil so long as you’re performing them with a good end in mind. This would include the suicide bomber, who believes that he’s changing the world for the better by slaughtering children in pizzerias, or the dictator who slaughters his enemies in pursuit of power.
2. Threatened Egotism. Baumeister found that violence wasn’t perpetrated by those with low self-esteem, but those with self-esteem that was threatened. He found that “violence is perpetrated by a subset of people who think well of themselves, and indeed it mainly occurs when they believe that their favorable images of self have been threatened or attacked.” This is the danger inherent in, for example, the microaggressions culture that suggests threat where none exists.
3. Idealism. This is really just a subset of instrumentality. It’s the belief that your violence makes the world a better place by drawing us closer to utopia. The worst wars in world history have been caused by idealism, as Karl Popper suggested.
Which one of these three doesn’t belong?