From Quillette- ‘A Noble Savage Speaks Up:‘
‘Not only because love is not an elastic band but also because, to be fair, the rest of the world doesn’t reciprocate. If they do, they are often too ashamed to say so in public and those who do overcome this shame end up risking death. What’s more, even though the secular religion of egalitarian love demands that the people of the West love everyone—absolutely everyone—an exception is made when it comes to loving their own selves.’
There are many Western, post-Enlightenment, humanistic ideals currently traded as currency in polite society; held aloft within institutions of education while driving much policy-making.
Some have roots within revolutionary and failed theories of history, susceptible to the demands of old and new radicals re-enacting the same old hatreds and ideological dead-ends (constantly seizing upon genuine and profound truths, injustices and inequalities).
Left-radicals still probably currently pose the biggest threats to speech:
Nearly three quarters of Americans agree campus assault policies must be fair to complainants and accused students: https://t.co/F4xf9p3Dx9
— FIRE (@TheFIREorg) September 29, 2017
Other ideals suffer from what I consider to be insufficiently low barriers to entry and potentially high individual and institutional liberty costs due to their idealistic character and utopian tendencies (what I call the ‘-Isms’). Lots of bad design and authoritarian consequences can easily result.
In dreams begins responsibility:
‘Their [realists’] concern is that utopian aspirations towards a new peaceful world order will simply absolutize conﬂicts and make them more intractable. National interests are in some degree negotiable; rights, in principle, are not. International organizations such as the United Nations have not been conspicuously successful in bringing peace, and it is likely that the states of the world would become extremely nervous of any move to give the UN the overwhelming power needed to do this.”
Ken Minogue, found here, passed along by a reader.
Many idealists demand and produce change, claiming universal truth and benefits to all, but they can easily get the problems of human nature and the possibility of objective knowledge wrong.
Most people rarely like discussing the costs of the change they’ve driven:
It’s hard to exaggerate the damage this has done to American civil society. https://t.co/av0lhwOdf1
— Charles Murray (@charlesmurray) October 1, 2017
If you’ve ever had a follower of ‘peace’ threaten you with violence, you’ll know what I mean.
From the Stanford Encyclopedia’s Page on Michael Oakeshott:
‘The fallacy of Rationalism, in other words, is that the knowledge it identifies as rational is itself the product of experience and judgment. It consists of rules, methods, or techniques abstracted from practice, tools that, far from being substitutes for experience and judgment, cannot be effectively used in the absence of experience and judgment.’
Democratic institutions are rather fragile, alas, easily manipulable, and open to corruption and ‘tyranny of the majority’ scenarios in a Constitutional Republic such as ours.
‘The pedigree of every political ideology shows it to be the creature, not of premeditation in advance of political activity, but meditation upon a manner of politics. In short, politics comes first and a political ideology follows after;…’
Oakeshott, Michael. Political Education. Bowes & Bowes, 1951. Print.
So, below, might we have a return to the People, Nature, and The Romantic Poet upon the hillside?
Alas, maybe it’s just another modern spin-cycle of mysticism, pseudo-science and a movement potentially as anti-scientific as anti-vaxxers, anti-humanists and the postmodern nihilists etc:
Who’s looking after the arts and sciences and also seeking broader and deeper understanding of that for which we ought to be grateful?:
— NPR (@NPR) September 30, 2017