Sunday, October 18, 2015

"There are so many fault lines that the nation seems consumed by a conflict of all against all."

"America is due for a revolution."


Anonymous said...

From Amazon, "The United States has been shaped by three sweeping political revolutions: Jefferson’s “revolution of 1800,” the Civil War, and the New Deal.". Key phase, "Civil War".

Chiu ChunLing said...

Each period of apparent consensus is based on the idea that, "fundamentally, we all want the same things."

They all break down in the end because this is always and everywhere a patent self-deception at best. There are two vast and essentially unbridgeable fault lines. One is between those who want to be better off themselves and those who want everyone else to be worse off. The 'Jeffersonian' era of liberty could only paper over the difference between those who wanted it for themselves and those who defined their own 'liberty' in terms of enslaving someone else, ultimately with tragic consequences for the nation. The New Deal breathed new life into the grand old lie that there is some common ground between people who define what is "best" for themselves and those who define it in terms of nobody else being any better off.

The other division is between those who define 'good' in an eternal sense (generally defined by religion but also influenced by philosophical ideals about enduring truth and beauty) and those who define it in a highly temporal context. The latter are most easily (but not solely) distinguished by their horror at all things 'old' (especially old people and their own inevitable old age). The economic collapse of America into the Great Depression was preceded by a moral collapse with regard to the ultimate purpose and definition of wealth and 'the good life', the pursuit of extremely transient pleasure and fulfillment at the expense of lasting self-improvement.

Fortunately for America, the previous Civil War and Great Depression were effectively separate, each focused on only one of these irreconcilable divisions which are implicit in all human affairs. We will not be so lucky this time. We have a worse social divide than ever before between those who celebrate immediate gratification and purchase indulgences for their temporal excess by homages to the idolatry of 'sustainability' on the one hand and those who respect and value the heritage of former generations and the responsibility to posterity. At the same time, the doctrinaire ideology by which those who produce the goods on which life and civilization depends exist only to serve the needs and pleasure of those who consume has been refined to a toxic religion of domination only dimly imagined by the defenders of the 'peculiar institution' before the Civil War.

Chiu ChunLing said...

Civilization, like any successful social status quo, depends on balance between makers and takers, consumers and conservators. There will always be people who never outgrow the childish demand that they receive without first earning, there can never be a society which does not allow children time and space to outgrow it at their own pace. The productive cannot eliminate the dependent without destroying the fundamental presumption by which each new generation comes to its inheritance. Nor can human life continue without making concessions to the present need despite its long term costs, to conserve absolutely without permitting any present consumption does not preserve life itself.

The producers and conservators largely understand this, by instinct if not conscious philosophy. They try to keep the balance, because doing so is productive and conservative. The plunderers and devourers, on the other hand, only ever check themselves by the natural process of ecological collapse when they destroy that on which they depend for their own existence. The plunderers of other men's labors brought our nation to its worst crisis in history, but were conservative enough to accept defeat. A generation of conspicuous consumers plunged our nation into economic despair, but were productive enough that survival was a matter of enduring hardship. What will be the outcome of our unrestrained plummet into rule by those determined to plunder all so they may consume upon their lusts immediately without any thought for production of the necessities of life or contemplation of their past and future?

Me, I'm bailing out of that society.

TheBohunk said...

It is very interesting, this cycles of history theory. I think I need to do more homework on it.

Seems that the cycles last about the length of one full lifetime. As if the consensus lasts until about the time those that agreed upon it are alive.

If past performance is indicative of future results, the next consensus is going to be worse than the current post-New Deal/WWII consensus.

Anonymous said...

Indeed, Progressives killed JFK and RFK, Progressives of the Right, the CIA, neocons in training at that time, before they even had the name.

Progressives of the Left had not been in power often since FDR, although they had begun the takeover of all of our institutions, including most in government.

Anonymous said...

thanks for the OP; I rarely follow MSM in any form. all the best, cycjec