Sunday 30 September 2012

We cannot win by argument


This strives not to be a topical blog and therefore I don't like linking to recent postings on other blogs - but this passage from last week at John C Wright's place needs special consideration:


Political Correctness is both deeply entrenched and precisely and perfectly evolved to act as a parasite on our civilization, perhaps to the point where it cannot be eliminated without damaging the host....

Political Correctness is evil, confident, ruthless, conscious-less, highly adaptive, and highly expert at using our laws and customs to disarm attacks both legal and verbal against its depredations.

The law is on its side. The political parties are on its side, the Democrats openly, the Republicans reluctantly.

The mass media, the press, and the entertainment industry that both reflects and shapes the mood and opinion of the common man, the powerful and subtle instrument of propaganda ever devised, are in their hands and they are expert at operating the engines of deception.

The academia are on its side: men of ordinary learning and prudence face evil geniuses of sophomoric idiocy.

(And do not ask me how they can be geniuses and idiotic at the same time. No doubt it is special gift of Azathoth, their tenebrous god, which renders them immune from the law of non-contradiction).

Every worldly gift is on their side.

On the other hand, if God is with us, who can be against us?


This passage expresses the impossibility (and I mean impossibility) of defeating such a hydra-headed phenomenon as political correctness by means of worldly force; even if there was any such worldly force at command of Christians, which there is not.

If it was a matter of replacing a tyrant, it might be possible albeit unlikely, but Leftism has been for centuries woven through our society such that to kill it is to kill the host.

We cannot see a way out of this bind, but all that means is that we cannot see a way out.

The fact that we cannot see a way out is no cause for despair; and despair is - anyway - not an option.

We know what things we need to do, and these are primarily spiritual things.



stephens said...

It's power is too reliant on money.
Money to enforce employment of the correct person.
Money to buy votes via unfair taxation (Tax Credits.)
Money as a sticking plaster on it's social failure.
It should weaken itself eventually as it attacks the financially productive members of society and creates an environment for those who are a financial burden to flourish.
When the West declines in wealth we will have to become more self reliant again (family?) and "Cultural Marxism" will have reduced influence.
The further down the road it goes, the greater the damage and retreat will have to be.

Bruce Charlton said...

@stephens. Agreed. The question is what will happen afterwards, how nations will break up, who will take over the chunks.

stephens said...

Hopefully when the twin gods of "Consumerism" and "Man-made Utopianism" lie in tatters, many will look to Christ and Family for guidance and support.
I don't think things will be great but perhaps this world is more useful as a training ground for Christian philanthropy. Perhaps the Welfare State allows us to be too self indulgent and lacking in thought for others.

Thursday said...

Yes, we will have to wait for liberalism to destroy itself (in the next 100-200 years). In the mean time we must have kids and hunker down and preserve pockets of sanity here and there

Bruce Charlton said...

@Thursday. If possible. It may not be possible. But the spiritual side is the crucial thing.

BTW it will not take a century for Leftism/ liberalism to destroy itself because the process of destrucion is exponential not linear (look around - it is, isn't it?), absolutely not.

I'm afraid we are talking about years rather than decades; indeed it could be any time.

Because long before the Leftist system implodes, it will get weaker than its enemies and at that point or soon after they will take over.

Thursday said...

it is, isn't it?


I'm afraid we are talking about years rather than decades; indeed it could be any time.

"There is a lot of ruin in a nation."

Bruce Charlton said...

@T - Well, those are words based on historical comparisons - but I don't think there is a comparable historical period to modernity.

For instance, there has never been a society, or a world, which is so complexly specialized and interdependent.

Anonymous said...

Ya'all are way to optimistic about economic collapse. If GDP declined 90% we would still be richer then 99% of human history. There would still be food on every table.

Moreover, economic growth is determined entirely by technological breakthroughs (especially energy) which are fairly unpredictable.

I think if your entire gameplan for "beating leftism" is that the economy is going to collapse in the next 50 years your might be disappointed.

Bruce Charlton said...

@Anonymous - I'm guessing you are young, unmarried and don't have children; or maybe don't know much about history; or you could not have said such a silly thing about being 'optimistic' about the collapse of civilization or 'disappointed' if it does not collapse.

But I agree that (relevant) technological breakthroughs underpin economic growth. They pretty much dried up from the mid-1960s onwards, due to the trend towards disappearance of geniuses. I have written a lot about such matters on the blog.