Tuesday, 7 June 2011

Goodies and baddies

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Given that neutrality is impossible nonsense, and that we ought to support the better against the worse, how do we discern goodies from baddies?

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Cast aside the nonesense of legalism, proceduralism - that has landed us where we are now.

Go back to the ancient idea of settling a trial mainly by means of character: the relative character of the two sides, as revealed by their past behavior and known motivations.

Character and motivation: what are the two sides like and what are they trying to do?

What would they do if they won?

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Often this is clear: if one side won they would (on the basis of their character) do things we regard as wrong: they are the baddies.

In most conflicts this is very, very obvious. 

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The goodies are those who are either trying to do something good, and who have on the basis of their character a reputation for doing good; or else (in a fallen world) simply those who oppose the baddies.

That is enough! - if you have better character and better motivations and/or you are against the baddies - then you are a goody.

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Most baddies are working to impose the rule of a bad person (a person of bad character and motivations) - some baddies are working to impose the rule of bad gods or god (the divinity being judged by character and motivations).

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(Of course, here I am talking in a secular kind of way, but the principle works even better from a religious perspective, mutatis mutandis).

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If only goodies would discern in this fashion (avoiding the snares of legalism, of proceduralism) and if only the goodies would unite in opposing the baddies - well, it would be a better world: the world would get better, more good.

If only...

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