What does ILP think it is? What do you think it isn’t?

All this hubaballa over consent being the only way a government can be said to be legitimate is nonsense once one defines legitimacy as simply a state in which the governed accept the decrees of governors. Consent will give you acceptance, but so will a bunch of other things. Agreement from the governed can come from people being convinced that one guy is a direct descendent of Adam, and thus that he has divine right to be a sovereign. Think about it. For 1000s of years people believed this. And if they can believe that fairy tale, they can believe anything.

I see no reason to conceptualize legitimacy in normative terms. It doesn’t make any sense why one way of convincing people to accept the rule of one form of government is more right than another way so far as both ways work.

legitimacy is a warm gun


I agree.

Not really. You’re thinking of happiness.

As far as governing, legitamcy is what the people accept not believe. A legitamate leader or set of governing rules does not have to benifit the population they just have to accept and obey it.
A child born to a single parent is considered illegtimate. Does that mean its a non person?

That’s internal legitimacy; there’s also international legitimacy, which is dependent on the acceptance of others. And in practice, is much more normative than seizing and exercising power in one’s own domain.

Good point. What is the standard then? What’s the reason for the standard? Democracy or bust?

I don’t think there is one. It’s a political act, a gesture of acceptance and endorsement, rather than a measured assessment.