Glad to have this flagged here, thanks. As I’ve said to @Chipmonk privately, I think this sort of boundaries-based deontology shares lots of DNA with the libertarian deontology tradition, which I gestured at in the last footnote. (See https://plato.stanford.edu/entries/ethics-deontological/#PatCenDeoThe for an overview.) Philosophers have been discussing this stuff at least since Nozick in the 1970s, so there’s lots of sophisticated material to draw on—I’d encourage boundaries/membranes fans to look at this literature before trying to reinvent everything from scratch.
The SEP article on republicanism also has some nice discussion of conceptual questions about non-interference and non-domination (https://plato.stanford.edu/entries/republicanism), which I think any approach along these lines will have to grapple with.@Andrew_Critch and @davidad, I’d be interested in hearing more about your respective boundaritarian versions of deontology, especially with respect to AI safety applications!
For what it’s worth, the phrase “night watchman” as I use it is certainly downstream of Nozick’s concept.