SOCIALLY SUSTAINABLE CONSERVATISM

This is a radically different approach from traditional conservatism.  It is certainly not based on the currently popular and simplistic idea that conservatives should be liberal on the social issues and conservative on the fiscal or economic issues.  It also is not about the contrast between capitalism and socialism or about the merits of or problems with Christianity or any other religion.  It is instead an attempt to determine fundamental principles that follow from developing a broad view of what is necessary for human survival and human welfare over the long term, i.e., on what makes a social system sustainable.  The basic ideas are derived from my discussion of  building a system of ethics for a population that is not constrained by a narrow vision.  That discussion can be found at:  http://www.third-millennium-ethics.com

This new approach to conservatism is based on the following six fundamental principles:

(1) Conservatives should continue practices that work and should not conduct radical social experiments with the whole of society;
(2) Conservatives should acknowledge that humans have not evolved to live in large societies and therefore all humans are to some degree misfits in large societies;
(3) Conservatives should understand that there will always be a tradeoff between tending to the individual’s needs, the family or small group needs, and the nation’s or large group’s needs;
(4) Conservatives should be wary of the concentration of power in any entities, including private entities, and especially those with a narrow focus or short-term goals, such as corporations;
(5) Conservatives should accept that humans have certain propensities for developing behavior patterns based on evolutionary pressures during human history, and should try to understand what these are and apply that knowledge in designing societal institutions or formulating laws and rules for people to live by; and
(6) Conservatives should be against genetic enhancements, empowering Artificial Intelligence, and creating man-machine hybrids or otherwise artificial or synthetic humans, as they need to emphasize the importance of traditional humanness.

Now, to the first principle.  The first fundamental principle is that conservatism should be based on the idea that we should continue doing what works, or at least be very measured in the implementation of  different methods, if we do not have a thorough understanding of the phenomena, and we do not have a thorough understanding of much of the phenomena in human society.

Understanding of the hard sciences has improved immeasurably over the last few centuries because in investigations in the hard sciences virtually all the significant variables can be isolated and rigorous experiments can determine precisely the effects of independent variables on dependent variables.  On the other hand, as the social sciences attempt to describe phenomena of virtually unbounded complexity, the significant variables cannot all be isolated and no experiments are possible to determine exact or precise relationships between variables.  That means that social science theories are little more than guesses, which can be all the more problematic because, without hard proof, the theories that rise to the top are likely to be those favored by powerful groups rather than those with the greater weight of the evidence on their side.

There are innumerable policy choices for a society to make over time, and history has shown that most societies have failed, implying that policy choices frequently lead to failure.  Obviously, those making the decisions on policy thought they were good ideas at the time, but often they led to failure over the long term.  That is why it is essential to consider sustainability of the social systems implemented.  Just as sustainability is critical for ecosystems, it is critical for social systems if the society is to survive for the long term.

Note that one of the many implications of this is that it is very dangerous to put all the power in one body that can make decisions for the entire society.  As these decisions are just guesses, one bad guess can cause catastrophe if it is implemented universally.  That supports the wisdom of distributing power at different levels and among different entities.

The second fundamental principle is that since humans evolved in small groups except for  the last few millennia of human history, they are not well adapted to living in large groups, such as modern cities and nation-states.  So many social problems follow from the mismatch between the environment we evolved in and the environment we find ourselves in today.  As human technology and civilization evolved, it became advantageous for humans to join the larger groups, though often little choice was involved, as the larger groups offered greater security from outside threats and provided greater economic specialization leading to greater efficiency, greater wealth, and a higher quality of life for many, though certainly not all.  But humans have never been able to completely emotionally adapt to the larger groups and still are not there today.  Humans have the propensity for engaging in behaviors, and for the desires that motivate those behaviors, that are healthy for small groups but may not be healthy in a larger group, often because large groups provide some degree of anonymity along with a lack of emotional connections between most members of the group.

One approach to minimizing emotional adjustment issues in a larger group was the development of the institution of marriage and the nuclear family.  Many assume that these developments followed simply from the implementation of agriculture and the creation of the idea of private property.  Those practices played a part, more so in societies with polygamy (which of course only served the interests of a small percentage of males, i.e., elite males), but the more critical reasons for the development of marriage and one-man, one-woman marriage particularly and its associated nuclear family were that it provided a small group that could meet the emotional needs of individuals, needs that had been unmet for the great majority in the large group, and it could provide a degree of protection to the more vulnerable members of the family group (in the large group, in interactions between individuals without emotional connections, there often are more incentives to be abusive than to be caring).  The nuclear family provided a cohesive and well-defined small group within the larger group, which, if stable (and laws developed to try to maximize its stability), could provide dependable human relationships that could aid in survival of self and small group as well as meet emotional and sexual needs.  When these needs were met, antisocial activities would have decreased and productive economic activity would have increased, increasing the wealth of the society and the quality of life of the great majority of individuals within it.  Men particularly became more productive, as they could spend much or most of their time isolated from other adult males and not feel dominated by the alpha males, an emotional state that shuts off creative decision-making processes and lessens motivation.

The larger groups also brought problems associated with anonymity, including free rider problems and many varieties of abuse of the weak and vulnerable by powerful or predatory strangers.  In a small group, everyone to some degree has emotional connections with and trusts the other members of the group, so the powerful are restrained in abusive behavior by these human feelings.  Also, because all members of the group are known to each other, behavior inconsistent with the group welfare is easily identified and addressed, but these advantages disappear with the anonymity that a larger group provides.  So the larger groups had to develop new means to regulate behavior among people who are strangers to each other and have no emotional connections.  Laws and customs had to be developed for the purposes of maintaining social harmony and ensuring group survival, including those that would protect the weak and vulnerable from abuse by strangers.

But in order to have a sustainable system of laws, there must be an authority structure, with a government or state, which almost inevitably forms into a hierarchy, because that is a simple and easily achievable form of effective and efficient organization. This usually creates a class of powerful elites at the top of the hierarchy who can abuse the common people without serious repercussions.  And this abuse is virtually inevitable, given that all individuals behave according to the array of pressures that they face, internal and external, and so the powerful will often indulge in their most frivolous desires at great cost to others if no push back exists (note that push back can include internal forces such as conscience that has been cultivated through training or education).

The third fundamental principle is that there will always be the need to strike a balance between tending to: (1) one’s own needs; (2) the needs of the small group, usually the nuclear family; and (3) the needs of the larger group, often the nation.  There is an argument that we have come to the point where the larger group should be the human race, though the needs of the human race could even be considered as something else to be balanced along with the other three.  Conservatives have traditionally put more emphasis on the first two elements on the list, whereas socialists and communists have put more emphasis on the third element.  Liberals, on the other hand, usually put the most emphasis on the first element, then the next most emphasis on the third element, and the least emphasis on the second element.

I would argue that conservatives should value all three elements roughly equally, though one must address one’s own needs in order to adequately address the needs of the small group, and one must address the small group’s needs in order to properly address the needs of the larger group.  One cannot be very helpful to the small group, the family, unless one is healthy mentally and physically, so one has to tend to oneself in order to tend to the small group.  And if one is part of a healthy and vibrant small group, then one can be more productive and more helpful to the larger group.  Also, I believe that over the long term, the needs of the individual, the small group, and the large group of the entire human race converge, that is unless the human race becomes fragmented by subgroups receiving genetic enhancements or otherwise being fundamentally changed.

The fourth fundamental principle, that conservatives should be wary of concentration of power in any one government or in any entity, is based not just on Lord Acton’s maxim that “Power tends to corrupt, and absolute power corrupts absolutely,” but also on the idea that all policies are to some degree guesses, and we should not allow ourselves to all be doomed by one entity’s very bad guess.

Also, note that the danger of concentration of power is not just that powerful entities can and usually do bend and shape the rules for their own narrow and short-term purposes at the expense of others.  For a society to survive long term, the needs of all members of the population must be considered to some degree in lawmaking, as human societies are interconnected and the needs of all converge over the long term, so even the elites are affected negatively when too many of the common people are suffering.  Too much concentration of power will often lead to the powerful entity shaping the rules exclusively for its own narrow and short-term purposes, which will weaken the entire society over the long term, possibly to the point of collapse, dooming the powerful as well as the weak.

The problem can be even more acute when private entities, such as large corporations, acquire excessive power.  While a government is expected to, and thus must make at least an appearance of trying to, provide for the general welfare, a corporation is tasked with and expected to only maximize the welfare of the shareholders.  It is usually the case that in the short to medium term the welfare of the shareholders and the general welfare differ to a considerable degree, but their interests generally converge over the long term.  However, as explained in the discussion of the sixth fundamental principle, the welfare of a subgroup of humans, such as the owners or managers of a powerful corporation, can potentially continue to diverge from that of the entire human race over the long term.

The fifth fundamental principle is that conservatives should accept that humans have certain propensities for developing behavior patterns based on evolutionary pressures during human history, and they should try to understand what these are and apply that knowledge in designing societal institutions or formulating laws and rules for people to live by.  As stated in the first principle, conservatives should be faithful to traditional practices to the extent they have served their purpose well, but when seeking improvements efforts should be made to discover and develop an understanding of human potential for developing new behavior patterns that are healthy and sustainable.  This requires an examination of the evolutionary pressures during human evolution that shaped and formed human propensities for behavior.  Analyses of these evolutionary pressures and the impact they would have had on human potential should be incorporated into any determination of recommendations regarding any significant changes in expected behavior or cultural norms.

The sixth fundamental principle is that conservatives should be against human genetic enhancement, empowering Artificial Intelligence, and creating man-machine hybrids or otherwise artificial or synthetic humans, as they need to emphasize the importance of traditional humanness (to paraphrase a Christian saying, “what benefits us if we gain the whole world, but lose ourselves”).

Conservatives should value humanness, as that is valuing what we have been and what has worked for us throughout our history.  Obviously we are evolving and our evolution has accelerated in the last few thousand years, and we should not see that as a negative, but at some point the acceleration in evolution departs to such a degree from the past that it creates an unhealthy disconnect.  If our patterns of thought and behavior change too rapidly, then we do not sufficiently nourish or preserve the feedback loops (the human ecosystem) that we have developed over millennia that we need to survive.

Note that the interconnectedness of the welfare of all members of the society follows from all members being of the same species and participating in the same economy.  If some subgroup starts to use genetic enhancements or other physical modifications, that could reduce the interconnectedness and result in a divergence of needs, not convergence, over the long term.  Also note that as more and more of the labor is done by Artificial Intelligence and Robotics, an elite subgroup may come to completely rely on machines for all labor and become less connected with the common people even without genetic enhancements or physical change.

If separate classes of people are created either through genetic or other physical change or through economic changes that remove interdependence and interconnectedness, a divergence between the classes in terms of needs, expectations, desires, values, goals, and outcomes would be created, inevitably resulting in competition and ultimately conflict and likely even annihilation of the weaker class.  And after the extermination of the weaker class, a new divergence would likely emerge as this dynamic repeats itself in cycles, with a probability of some cataclysmic event presenting a significant probability of human extinction in each cycle, until it become a near certainty that the human race would go extinct.

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FEMINIST FUNDAMENTALISM

First, I want to say that I believe that of the many effects of feminism that have had a significant impact on our society, the one that receives the least attention in relation to its importance is that of the reduction of the rewards that men receive in acting for the greater good, acting in a utilitarian manner. That main motivating factor for men throughout history to act for the greater good was the reward that they expected to receive from women for doing so, but feminists are conditioned to ignore the positive acts men perform and thus not to reward them for such acts. The result is that fewer and fewer men act for the greater good, and the downward trend is accelerating. This is leading to the atomization, cannibalization, and disintegration of human society, and too few are able to recognize it.

How did it get to this point? I believe that feminism has evolved into something whose adherents defend it with blind faith like a religion – the ideology of Feminist Fundamentalism, which has spawned third wave feminism, and which seems to be part of a broader trend to replace scientific rationalism with post-rational mysticism.    Feminist Fundamentalism in many ways resembles a religion in that it promotes beliefs that are mostly based on magical thinking and not based on science or on the weight of the evidence, including beliefs that men and women are the same intellectually, emotionally, and in ability (or even that women are intellectually superior, based on flawed comparisons that ignore that girls/women mature and peak earlier than boys/men).  Also, like most religions, it has fanatical followers, mostly consisting of over-privileged young women, many of whom glorify victimhood and are obsessed with acts of micro-aggression.

Feminist Fundamentalist beliefs are easily distinguished from, though they are often conflated with, the related moral imperative that women and men should be treated as having the same value to society and provided the same respect, nurturing, and concern and their needs attended to equally.  Also, note that these beliefs imply that men and women are equal in virtually all ways, except that only women can have babies so that women are a bit more equal, making men redundant, unnecessary, and expendable.

The Feminist Fundamentalism belief system, which is the source of most of the rules of political correctness and which has become accepted uncritically by much of academia, is backed by pseudo-science designed for the pseudo-sophisticated, is counterfactual, deviates significantly from what the best available evidence suggests, fuels hate-filled and divisive rants about “the patriarchy” which demonize half the members of the human race, and causes great inefficiency in the degree to which Western societies meet the needs of their members.  It is interesting that the proponents of Feminist Fundamentalism argue that it follows from applying Critical Theory to traditional beliefs, though a similar application of Critical Theory to the Feminist Fundamentalist belief system would demonstrate that it is at least as arbitrary as traditional belief systems while, unlike traditional beliefs, it cannot be said to have successfully built a modern civilization.

One of the most dangerous and destructive Feminist Fundamentalist beliefs is that homosexual relations are equal to heterosexual relations.  Like the other beliefs, this is counterfactual and not based on any scientific evidence but instead is based on what those promoting the ideology wish to be true.  Evolution designed heterosexuality, as it designed gender differences, over millions of years to serve purposes related not only to reproduction but to the creation of group harmony and cohesion.  The attacks on the value of heterosexuality and the poisoning of the relations between men and women by the advocates of Feminist Fundamentalism erode the fundamental bonds that hold a society together, creating a plethora of associated short- and long-term costs, many of them unforeseeable.

Among other costs of adopting Feminist Fundamentalist beliefs, including increased confusion of self-identity and social chaos resulting from more unmet expectations, the legal system is burdened with the task of limiting and punishing behavior, mostly by males, that results from the adopting these beliefs and ignoring the differences in the sexes. The ignoring of the differences leads to not only criminal prosecutions that overburden that system, but creates a great many broken and bitter people who will become burdens on, rather than contributors to, human society.  Even more concerning, it becomes impossible to design an efficient, harmonious society on a scientific basis with these nonsensical and non-scientific beliefs dominating social relations.

One place where the legal system does recognize significant difference in the sexes is in child custody preferences.  Here, a flawed assumption is made that women should be given custody of children after divorce.  It was decided long ago that child custody cases would operate under a presumption that the mother should receive custody as it was assumed that the mother was the more necessary parent.  However, I think the data developed over the past few decades of how poorly boys do without a father in the house makes it imperative to abandon the earlier presumption.  Also, children learn more from the parent of the same sex so the presumption in child custody cases should be in favor of giving custody to the parent of the same sex as the child.  I would further add that while the earlier practice was in part based on the assumption that children would fare better if siblings were not separated, the need of a boy for the constant oversight and companionship of a father appears to far outweigh any benefit the boy might receive from being placed with female siblings.

Note that Feminist Fundamentalism is not any more scientific or rational than the traditional deity-based religions that it is apparently supplanting.  Similar to what these religions did in the past, it is ascending because it corresponds with the interests of those with the most power, which in today’s world means globalist elites and the giant corporations that they control.

As these globalist elites have divided the common people and made it more difficult for them to resist their subjugation, they have corrupted Maslow’s ideas about personal fulfillment and have glorified tedious office work while devaluing motherhood and the importance of nurturing.  By this they have not only elevated financial concerns above broader human needs, but have pushed more women into the labor force, depressing labor costs, and normalizing the viewpoint that the common man or woman should strive to be, and should expect to be, nothing more than an interchangeable, disposable, corporate worker bee.

No man or woman dares to challenge Feminist Fundamentalism for fear of being targeted and labeled as someone socially undesirable.  Just acknowledging that there may be questions regarding the validity of some of its premises can end or seriously damage someone’s career – just ask Larry Summers.  The oppressive environment fostered by the priests of Feminist Fundamentalism in protecting this irrational belief system in some ways rivals that created by the Catholic Church in Medieval Europe.

SOME THOUGHTS ON CULTURE

A currently popular  idea is that all cultures are equal.  This arises from a misguided attempt to show respect for and provide dignity to those who come from other than the dominant culture, though it only serves to further disempower them.  The culture that a group of people develops in a particular environment is an adaptation to that environment and as such has been molded by the forces present to allow the individuals to effectively operate in that environment.  Those from a different environment who have been shaped by a different culture will likely not be as effective in the new environment unless they adapt to its culture.  To encourage them not to adapt to the culture or even to advise them to mix in equal proportions their prior culture with the culture of this new environment is doing them a disservice.

The exception to this is when the newcomers from the different culture are able to achieve dominance through force or technological superiority.  Then they may provide pressure for structures and patterns in the culture of their new home to conform to their alien culture, and individuals in their new home may be required to adapt to the alien culture.  Also, note that some cultures have relatively more universal attributes that empower the individuals who absorb them to dominate others in other environments (e.g., a preference for the scientific method), so these cultures more often become expansive.

On another related point, it is often said that “Politics is downstream from culture.”  While not disputing that, I think a more complete representation would be an Escher-like endless loop constructed as follows:
(1) Politics is downstream from culture;
(2) Culture is downstream from both technological innovation and law;
(3) Technological innovation and law are downstream from economic policies;
(4) Economic policies are downstream from politics. (Loop back to (1))

PRIVILEGE

There are innumerable ways in which people can be divided, including by social class, income or wealth, educational level, intelligence (along any dimension), race, ethnicity, gender, nationality, age, health, height, weight or body shape, physical attractiveness, athletic ability, sexual practices or preferences, hobbies, geographical location, job or profession, etc…  Grouping by focusing on any one of these characteristics can make sense in some context.  Also, the same individual may be labeled as “underprivileged” because of membership in a group that has been traditionally disadvantaged if one characteristic is examined and labeled as “privileged” because of membership in a group that has been advantaged if another characteristic is examined.  Actually, the odds are that the great majority of individuals are in at least one advantaged and at least one disadvantaged group of some significance.  So any reasonable attempt to judge whether a person is “privileged” or “underprivileged” would require a holistic approach to consider all groupings with any significant impact.  For example, a wealthy, well-educated, physically attractive African-American woman with wealthy parents is certainly more privileged than a poor, uneducated, unattractive male immigrant from Eastern Europe.

What is particularly disturbing is the growing trend for individuals that are more advantaged than disadvantaged, when considering the totality of characteristics, who label others as “privileged” because of a single characteristic, disregarding whether those others would be deemed advantaged from a holistic perspective.  What is ironic is that the labeling usually involves bullying the weak and vulnerable, from a holistic perspective, by those who claim they are in search of equal treatment for all.

A common instance of this is when young women verbally assault young men, especially white young men, by claiming the latter are “privileged” with the implication that they should lose some of their social status and possibly even their rights as a result.  The sentiment behind this is not based on proof that the young men have engaged in any harmful behavior or that they themselves have received any significant undeserved rewards, but that people who looked like them in the past engaged in such behavior or received such rewards.  However, not tying rewards, punishments, or social feedback generally to behavior is very dangerous.  This is equivalent to indicting a defendant for a crime even though it is certain that the defendant was not personally involved in the crime, as it is deemed sufficient that someone who looked similar to the defendant was involved.

What makes this even worse is that these verbal assaults are part of a pattern of unrelenting attacks on innocent and vulnerable young men by bullying young women who will keep pressing their advantage as long as there is no pushback.  Certainly there are young men who are privileged and there are those who are bullies, but they rarely as the victims of these attacks and they rarely suffer the consequences.  It is mostly vulnerable young men lacking social confidence, those who are not privileged from a holistic perspective, who are most often attacked and who feel each cut of the seemingly endless stream of cuts most deeply.  The jackals always attack the most vulnerable, not the strongest, but only human jackals would claim that it is just and honorable to do so.

One last point is that an essential element of the narrative that white male privilege requires corrective action to achieve justice is the belief that only white straight males were better off before the current focus on social justice while everyone else was worse off.  However, according to surveys regarding satisfaction in life and several other indicators of quality of life, virtually all racial and ethnic groups and both sexes have seen a decline in quality of life in the last number of years.  Ironically, those who were instrumental in manipulating public perception to make white male privilege a dominant narrative were mostly very wealthy white males, a subgroup of the one group that has seen an improvement in quality of life in the last few decades — the very rich.

VALUES & SUSTAINABILITY

Large groups of humans living together, including large human societies, develop values and rules that follow from those values that to some degree provide for the welfare, sustainability, and survivability of the group or the groups perish.  As the elites in the society generally design, implement, and enforce the rules, they feel constant internal pressure to mold the rules to serve their own narrow interests and external pressure to develop rules that serve the broader interests of the entire society, i.e., utilitarian rules.  This results in a a set of rules that contains some rules for the exclusive benefit of the elites and other rules for the benefit of the whole, including non-elites.

However, if the external pressure is reduced in some way, for example if the elites become more insulated because of the accumulation of wealth or other forms of power, then the balance is tilted towards the values and narrow rules that only serve their interests.  This can create self-reinforcing feedback loops as these self-serving rules may accelerate the accumulation of wealth and power of the elites.  This leads to the deterioration of the welfare of the non-elites, which eventually leads to general societal deterioration which even impacts the elites, regardless of the degree to which they have insulated themselves from the problems and suffering of the non-elites.   Unless this societal deterioration is addressed rapidly and forcefully, the economy of the society and the society itself begin to disintegrate and develop runaway feedback loops of self-destruction, caused by ever narrowing self interest, leading to complete disintegration and collapse.

Also note that while civilization offers a great improvement in the quality of life for humans, it is at the cost of suppressing certain behavioral trends and desires that naturally occur (that would be consistent with group survival and welfare in a small hunter-gatherer group but inconsistent with group survival and welfare in a large, complex civilization).  The best minds of most generations throughout the thousands of years of civilization have agreed that the benefits of civilization far outweigh the costs, but because of a confluence of several different forces many influential individuals in Western societies, particularly the United States, during the past few decades have become convinced that the benefits are not worth the costs and have successfully brought pressure to discard or reduce the civilized values, i.e., those that benefit the general welfare, from society.

GENDER AND TRANSGENDER

The term “gender” has evolved from originally meaning the biological sex of an individual to meaning something about the social or cultural identity of the individual.  This is logically problematic.  A male gender identity is said to derive from engaging in behaviors that are generally classified as “male,” and similarly for a female gender identity.  The fundamental logical problem with this is that the classification of any behavior as “male” is subjective and imprecise and is a gross generalization that is only used for simplicity and convenience.  Engaging in any one behavior or even any set of behaviors does not make one male, as clearly females can engage in virtually any male behavior and vice versa.  A much more scientific, precise, and objective determination of whether one is male is based on the presence of the XY chromosome, while a determination of whether one is female is based on the presence of the XX chromosome.  To use a particular behavior or set of behaviors as an indicator of an individual’s sex when there is much more powerful evidence such as the individual’s chromosomes is not logical or reasonable.  One does not judge an individual’s age based on their behavior, even though many behaviors are correlated with age just as many behaviors are correlated with sex.  If one has evidence of an individual’s birthdate, that outweighs any evidence of age-related behavior.  The same should be true for sex or gender.

One particularly troubling result of this gender confusion is that some believe that changing from one sex to the other, i.e., undergoing a transgender procedure, is a healthy and reasonable choice to make. First off, maybe medical advances will change this in the future, but as of now even with surgery and hormone therapy one can only resemble the other sex in a superficial manner. The years of brain and body development as the other sex can not be completely, or even mostly, erased. Also, much of the knowledge of how to survive as a member of one’s birth sex will lose its value, and one will have missed out on gaining the corresponding knowledge that members of the other sex developed during youth.

Since one’s physical sexual characteristics at birth are objective and anything but arbitrary, while a culture’s association between an individual’s sex and gender identity may be somewhat subjective and arbitrary, rather than changing the non-arbitrary body to fit with arbitrary and subjective notions about gender identity, it would make far more sense to change the arbitrary and subjective notions about gender identity to fit with the objective characteristics of the body.

But maybe the most compelling reason to condemn this idea is that it distracts and confuses troubled and unhappy individuals and prevents them from focusing on more reasonable means to improve their lives. A further problem is that as the idea gains momentum, it offers another opportunity for individuals to knowingly make behavioral choices that are disfavored by the general society, and then, after claims of discrimination, expect the society to make accommodations for that choice. This is problematic for behavioral choices because humans are quite flexible and adaptable animals, and there are innumerable possible behavioral choices they can make, and social chaos is only prevented, and some degree of social harmony achieved, by limiting that number through societal pressure to restrict apparently unhealthy or arbitrary behavior.

 

FREEDOM

“Freedom” is an often misused and abused term that has limited usefulness in political analysis. Certainly every political actor acts in accordance with the forces or pressures, internal and external, that are applied to the actor.

The word “freedom” is often used by elites to obfuscate and confuse and to keep the powerless non-elites from joining together to form a government to protect themselves from the predations of the powerful (i.e., “freedom” means the elites have the right to be protected from the possibility that the little people use a government to protect themselves from the elites).  The elites sell the idea of freedom as a substitute for equality as it suggests the equal ability to engage in a wide range of activities, with the implicit assumption that only governmental action would act as a restriction.  However, the lack of financial resources is usually what limits an individual’s ability to engage in various activities.  The elites usually tack on a promise of “equal rights before the law” but this type of equality also is generally subject to the financial limitations of the individual, as it usually requires financial resources to enforce the individual’s legal rights.  Moreover, the most important measure of equality, financial equality, is ignored while every other possible form of equality may be promoted and celebrated, including the equality of different types of behavior regardless of the negative implications for social harmony or for the development of common values and shared goals.

There is some value in the social freedom that comes from feeling that one is not dominated by other particular individuals in the society.  Through millions of years of evolution, people developed some resistance to other individual humans exerting control over their activities. This is unsurprising, as in many instances they were being controlled against their own interests, particularly reproductive interests, and so the survival of the individual’s genes depended in part on avoiding such control.  On the other hand, once people accepted and submitted to such dominance, evolution designed people to shut off their analytical and creative processes to minimize conflict and to allow the group to behave as one when competing with outside forces.  But people who are not so dominated and who do not shut down their own analytical and creative processes tend to be much more productive and contribute more to the society.

Some argue that the way to achieve this social freedom is to avoid all analysis, because inherent within any form of analysis is social programming by the elites to control the population.  However, analysis-free thought leads to perceptions or models with no depth, and these are the simplest and therefore the easiest to program.  The deeper the analysis, the more combinations of thoughts that are possible and the more complex the models that are created, such that they could not possibly be pre-programmed.

Also, the individual is a social being and survives and reproduces as part of a human social group, so avoidance of others to achieve the social freedom is not an option.  A balance must be struck, which would involve achieving harmony with others in the social group that the individual belongs to.  Harmony is achieved through agreements on the division of labor (made easier through specialization), and the remuneration that would accompany such (with consideration of the inevitable feelings of alienation and injustice from a wide distribution of income but also with a recognition of the need for a higher rate of remuneration to motivate some to perform the more difficult tasks), and the development of common goals based on common values with collaboration on achieving them.

However, it should be noted that social freedom through social equality is actually a weak substitute for financial equality.  Equality leads to social freedom, i.e., a lack of domination, but social freedom does not necessarily lead to financial equality.  Though it should be added that the goal should be a limit on inequality rather than complete equality, as discrepancies in income are necessary for motivational purposes and for promotion of best behavioral practices.

Note that some elites promote the idea of social equality because their self-image requires that they convince themselves that they are “fair” and “support equality” while other elites just recognize that non-elite individuals are more apt to contribute positively to the society if those individuals believe the society is “fair” and offers them a chance to have or aspire to some semblance of social equality.

 

FREE WILL & ELITES

The idea of “free will” is simply a misconception following from the illusion of pure identity over time, i.e. lack of recognition that we are not exactly the same people we were a moment before. We are all evolving all the time, our neuronal connections are changing, and what we think in any moment is a function of that evolution as prompted both by ongoing chemical changes and by changes induced by input from the external environment. By the time we finish the choice we are a slightly different person from the one who was prompted with the input that leads to the choice. The determinist focuses on the external input to the choice and how it affects the choice and a true believer in “free will” starts with the assumption that the person who finished making the choice is identical to the person before making the choice, before being prompted by the external input that leads to the choice. But it would be a mistake to model it as simple determinism where the input solely determined the choice, as the person at the time of being prompted was a fundamental part of the equation, a very significant participant.

Moreover, the concept became popular and useful during a particular period in the development of human knowledge and related social/cultural development.  The elites of many groups, who preferred to keep the non-elites separate and weak, and who wished to portray themselves as capable and deserving of their elite status, developed a philosophy of individualism and free will and they promoted this philosophy among the population.  The beauty of this philosophy for the elites is that, as the belief that a “God” had ordained the social order began to wane, it justified the continuation of a hierarchical social order with extreme inequality as it implied that: (1) through their own superior ability, work ethic, and the exercise of their free will, they had risen to the top and deserved their elite status and all the benefits that went along with it; and (2) the non-elites were deserving of their low status because of their own failures and decisions from the exercise of their free will, and it would be inappropriate and useless for them to try to understand the social or economic forces that may have contributed to those failures or to join together to change the social order.

POLITICAL CORRECTNESS, IDENTITY POLITICS, CULTURAL MARXISM, and NWO FEUDALISM

The allure of political correctness is that it offers a path toward more civilized, less offensive discourse that ideally would lead to a more harmonious and just society.  However, there is no practicable method for determining the boundaries of speech so that no one would be offended or harmed, and the powerful determine the priorities in deciding what harm should be avoided.  So in practice political correctness tends to stifle the speech of the politically weak or powerless, as preventing transgressions against them are considered of lower priority than preventing offenses against the well-connected and powerful.  So it tends to further empower the elites while  it silences dissent from the powerless.

Also note that in any sphere of human activity that involves interaction with nature, including human nature, models must be used which are of necessity incomplete and approximate.  Nature, and any phenomenon in nature which may be perceived and represented, is of unbounded complexity, and so a model, which is of finite complexity, can always be improved upon.  That is why no social convention, and no opinion regarding optimal human social interaction, should ever be immune from criticism and scrutiny.  Analysis of such conventions, opinions, and behaviors is unbounded in depth, and pat answers are the province of the uneducated and the lazy-minded.

Note that Identity Politics, which has become a significant component of political correctness, divides the common people in an age where technological developments offer the opportunity for them to create common understandings and common values that could lead to the development of a common purpose and create a more healthy and harmonious society.  Those who advocate Identity Politics often claim that sexism can best be fought by dividing the society between the sexes and that racism can best by fought by dividing the society between the races.  But dividing people by sex is sexism at its most fundamental, just as dividing people by race is racism at its most fundamental.

Also, it should be obvious that individuals are multi-dimensional, i.e., each has individual characteristics, some immutable and some not, on the dimensions of sex or gender, race, ethnicity, nationality, talent or intellectual ability, sexuality, religion or spiritual beliefs, age, health, athletic ability, income, personal or family wealth, educational level, profession or job, physical attractiveness, etc… On each of these dimensions, an individual may be advantaged, disadvantaged, or somewhere in between. So to properly determine whether someone is advantaged or privileged overall, one would have to examine the entire list of dimensions and note one’s position in each, but this is rarely done. I suspect what mostly happens is those individuals who are underprivileged overall but who are privileged on the dimensions most often emphasized, i.e., race and sex, pay most of the price of being labeled “privileged,” while those who are actually privileged overall are able to position themselves so they escape the negative consequences. And those who are privileged overall but are considered underprivileged on the emphasized dimensions gain a further advantage from what they already have, and they are often the ones who most enthusiastically promote the scheme.

Note that Nationalist Identity is probably the most defensible type of identity, because nations are somewhat closed systems that can resemble a tribe, or they used to be and can be with functioning borders, where people can work together and provide positive and negative feedback to each other to improve the general welfare, including establishing a functional political system that responds to the needs of all the people. Other forms of Identity Politics which lead to other groupings do not form closed systems at all, and cannot form proper tribes, and so there can be no healthy or functional feedback process to improve the group’s general welfare.

Since Identity Politics, particularly when focused on race and sex, obviously causes more harm than good, it seems likely that the movement to popularize it has been subject to manipulation by malevolent outside actors from the beginning.  Such action would appear to be consistent with the time-honored technique of the powerful — to divide the common people so that they may more easily be subjugated.

Related to this, note that for the past few decades there have been more and more references to a New World Order, or NWO, that describes a global political-economic system many believe will come to power in the next few decades.  It is common to speculate that the NWO will be Marxist in nature, but that appears highly unlikely.  Authentic Marxism means no state and no personal property and no one expects that to happen.  The more realistic efforts to create a Marxist society, like those of the Soviets, involved the creation of a socialist state according to Marxist principles, which involved confiscation of all private property which was then to be used as efficiently as possible by the state to improve the welfare of the people as a whole.  Of course, it never actually worked that way as “All animals are equal, but some animals are more equal than others,” meaning that those in high positions in government and the well-connected usually received the lion’s share of the benefit.
But the current efforts of elites to establish a NWO do not resemble those of the Bolsheviks in Russia or any other Marxists in history, because such elites have no intention of giving up their property to the state or anyone else.  Instead, they want to empower the state to reshape the society and economy in their interests, using Cultural Marxism, so that they can accumulate even more property.

Globalist elites determined that they could minimize resistance if they could transform the left from a movement organized around the struggle of labor vs. capital, i.e., traditional Marxism, into a movement that would inevitably lead to dividing the little people into warring groups.  So these elites provided support to help create the “New Left,” which is a form of Cultural Marxism (that actually shares some attributes of Mao’s Cultural Revolution), that focuses on the formation of and empowerment of competing political identity groups.  The support was in part direct, but mostly indirect, as the elites provided the New Left with access to mainstream media and the messages, ideas, and values of the New Left were broadly spread, widely promoted, and sometimes even celebrated.  This was all done at the expense of the Pro-Labor Left, which had posed a much greater threat to the political-economic power structure, and over time the New Left supplanted the Pro-Labor Left as the mainstream of the left.

Cultural Marxism, in simplest terms, is the idea that all traditional ideas regarding culture, values, moral systems, and social behaviors should be critically reviewed, and that when they are, they have little justification.  There appears to be an alternative form of it which advocates that virtually all cultures, values, moral systems, and social behaviors are equal unless they involve advocating or engaging in violence.

Now, I’m not using the term “Cultural Marxism” as has been used by others to claim that the Frankfurt School of social theory, which is the source of Critical Theory and much of the new philosophical approaches of the social liberals, is designed to destroy Western civilization, as that seems overbroad and lacking in reason.  Instead, as a result of critically reviewing Critical Theory, I find that certain elites use Critical Theory to advance themselves by tearing down those who would stand in their way.  In our current situation, so-called “intellectuals” whether consciously or unconsciously carry water for, are useful idiots of, certain elites who want to tear down present structures in order to redesign society to serve their own interests.

Hiding behind the egalitarian cover provided by Cultural Marxism, the corporate media promotes radical new social trends and belief systems and encourages the use of Identity Politics and Political Correctness to enforce the new beliefs and trends, which are spread by Taliban-like ideological zealots, often called “Social Justice Warriors,” who act as useful idiots for the elites as they stifle free speech and try to quash dissent among the common people.  These new ways of thinking undermine all traditional beliefs, values, bonds, expectations, and behavior patterns, which helps to make the little people more malleable as it breaks down their resistance to having their lives and their society transformed so as to better align with the interests of the elites.  But what may be more important is that these belief systems atomize society as they create division and social chaos — the little people come to have a wide array of values, beliefs, and perspectives and it becomes impossible for most to agree on important issues and to coalesce to form a strong political force.

These radical beliefs spread under the umbrella of Cultural Marxism not only destroy solidarity among the little people and makes them ineffectual politically, but it also makes them less motivated and less mentally healthy so that they are less productive and often become broken people, as part of a decadent culture producing ignorant, incompetent, impulsive, and irrational citizens with no mooring to any established cultural norms.

The divisions created are problematic over the long term for any human society at a fundamental level.  They not only insulate the elites from any serious challenges to their power, allowing problems to fester and the rise of other abuses that follow from unchallenged power, but more importantly it sets women against men, which can only lead over the long term to social disintegration.  Men and women were designed by evolution to be different pieces of the same puzzle, so that they would fit together with different needs and different abilities to make a harmonious and healthy society that could survive over the long term.   When men and women are convinced that they are competing groups and even enemies, then the myriad of inter-dependencies between the sexes, some known and many unknown, that human societies have depended on for survival throughout their hundreds of thousands of years of evolution are severed, leading to  innumerable unpredictable ripple effects that could very easily cripple the society.

But the globalist elites pushing for a NWO and using this New Left, with its Cultural Marxism radically changing social rules that human societies have depended on to provide for the general welfare for millennia, keep on forging ahead, using an army of idealistic youthful dreamers fantasizing about some impossible Marxist utopia, while the elites have absolutely no intention of creating a Marxist state resembling that of the utopian vision of their useful idiots.  Instead, they want to create a new type of feudalism with their NWO, where the few, including them, have everything, and everyone else has nothing.

The great majority of the population in this envisioned NWO will be somewhat like serfs, though in a sense worse than serfs in that serfs were necessary to tend to the land, while in the future robots with Artificial Intelligence will do the work, and so these new serfs will be redundant and disposable.  Pressure will build among the elites of the NWO to eliminate these serfs, either gradually by preventing reproduction or possibly even immediately through genocide carried out by the robots.
In summary, the NWO will not be Marxist, but will be a new type of feudalism, and one with a very hard edge, making historical feudalism seem kind and caring by comparison.  And the useful idiot youthful idealists are inadvertently helping to create this world, thinking they are working for the opposite.

CONVERSION

Given the infinite number of possible alternatives available, the only way that uniformity in belief systems, regarding aspects of reality not subject to rigorous scientific experimentation, is attained is through conversion by dominant individuals or groups of submissive individuals or groups. Uniformity of some degree is essential to provide common goals and purposes and harmony of activity within a society. So the effort to provide uniformity has utilitarian components, though it usually also contains components that serve more the interests of the dominant individuals or groups.

Some attempts at conversion are arguably pure utilitarian, particularly with regard to certain interpretations of utilitarianism. For example, spreading the belief that long-term benefits should be prioritized over short-term benefits would be purely utilitarian if utilitarianism is interpreted to mean “the greatest good for the greatest number over the long term.” So the conversion of others to this belief could be characterized as purely utilitarian.

However, this example illustrates how no conversion, or motive behind a conversion, can be critically reviewed except with regard to particular goals, and the goals are arrived at by a priori desires

One other point is that those converting others to prioritize long-term benefits are more likely to create a sustainable group or society than those converting others to prioritize short-term benefits. The latter groups usually vanish from the face of the earth in the long-term and we are left with the former groups.