Mother of All Woolly-Headedness, Most Philosophical Error, and Irrational
C.W. Rietdijk, D. Sc.
Why would God have made the emotional incoherent and
impervious to science? Why, then, not integrate into the latter the message
of prophets and the awe-inspiring?
1. The idea of a woolly universe
Let’s start with some points on the level of the factual [(1), (2) and (3)].
(1) In my Paradigm in Default (PD) I showed that, among five widespread convictions, four are demonstrably wrong. The latter are:
* Ratio-empiricism and modern science more generally start from “premises” that are beyond the realm of reason, verification and objectivity.
* No rationally derivable, objective, ethical standards exist (relativism).
* In the past few centuries, virtually no moral progress has been realized (in Western societies).
* The future is fundamentally contingent; that is, indeterminate, both on account of quantum-mechanical uncertainty margins and of the “free will” of man.
As regards free will we add to the argument of PD that its existence has been refuted experimentally by Benjamin Libet of the University of California. (For example, see Der Spiegel of 4/15/1996.) Libet found that in some situations an instrument measuring brain processes could establish and register a “free-will decision” already one third of a second prior to when the relevant individual himself consciously experienced such “free” choice. Hence that choice was not the “original root” of the relevant outcome. It was consequence rather than cause. (Here compare Schopenhauer: “We are free to do what we want, but not free to want what we want”.)
On the other hand, a fifth widespread conviction (as referred to earlier), in the spirit of the four stated above, cannot (yet?) rationally be refuted. It is the assumption that, though many, or most (or all), separate events in the human life-world are rather precisely causally defined (by natural law or “free will”), there is a great deal of pure chance, coincidence, in how the world as a whole (as a complex) comes about – evolution, civilizations, our personal destiny,… For current science and received wisdom contain that little or no natural laws and influences appear which nonlocally “orchestrate” or coordinate processes so much that various results too are coherently defined. Here specifically think of the above evolution, destiny etc.
Still, at the end of Sect 3 of PD we give some indications telling for the idea that nature is indeed coherent to such an extent.
Preliminary conclusion: Though on the macro level things may be “chaotic” and incoherent to some (large) degree, it is in any case certain, on account of the foregoing, that the universe is in no way “fuzzy”, indefinite (“uncertain”), poly-interpretable or subjective. Not even so as to moral values. On the other hand, the thesis that the world is indeed completely definite (“prescribed”) by partially nonlocal natural laws that coherently define even results – instead of its only being defined by its mere realistically four-dimensional existence – has not (yet?) been demonstrated scientifically. Still, fundamental fuzziness (whatever this may be!), uncertainty, contingency, or subjectivity of reality (also as to values) are untenable positions after our preceding arguments (those of PD included). There is no woolliness or ambiguity whatsoever in the universe and as to (four-dimensional) reality. Man, his values and interpretations – their possible correctness included – are part and parcel of such reality; that is, of the (partly?) coherent network of facts and relations between them Taine once referred to. (We may add Freud’s comment: “There is only one truth because there is only one reality.”)
Ockham’s razor too is on the side of our above conclusion. For the latter constitutes the simplest (and most coherent) explanation of the phenomena. That is, far more simple than a possible alternative in which the “subjective realities and interpretations” of many individuals should somehow be taken very seriously in the sense that errors and prejudices would not have a fundamentally different status from truth. This would imply a “hyper-complication” similar to the “Many-worlds theory” in physics. Both positions are extremely roundabout ways of accommodating to subjectivity and the Heisenberg uncertainty margins, respectively.
(2) It has been observed that the two main schools of thought dominating in our era are relativism-postmodernism on the one hand, and traditionalism on the other. In actual fact, the two have something essential in common. That is, the idea that values, meaning and purpose are provided to us by our cultural environment and “naturally” should be so. In principle – though seldom in practice – they are purported to arise from individual free-will decisions, but actually either do so from the “free choice” of socio-cultural groups or from our structured or “organic” past. It is not required from them to legitimize their possible objective merit or cogency by rational argument.
Our reasoning in (1) implies both above schools to be wrong: values etcetera are positively objective and derivable by rational argument. They cannot derive authority from mere (group) choices or tradition. Within this scope, some cultures, as well as genetic configurations, are objectively superior to others, in view of their potential of creating happiness and minimizing unhappiness, which is also related to (partly genetically defined) human faculties on the moral, intellectual and other levels.
(3) I quote from James Burnham: The Suicide of the West (Regnery, 1985):
“There is no tragic dimension in its [liberalism’s] picture of the good life. Men become willing to endure, sacrifice and die for God, for family, king, honour, country, from a sense of absolute duty or an exalted vision of the meaning of history… And it is precisely these ideas and institutions that liberalism has criticised, attacked and in part overthrown as superstition, archaic, reactionary, and irrational. In their place liberalism proposes a set of pale and bloodless abstractions – pale and bloodless for the very reason that they have no roots in the past, in deep feeling and suffering. Except for mercenaries, saints, and neurotics, no one is willing to sacrifice and die for progressive education, medicare, humanity in the abstract, the United Nations, and a ten percent rise in Social Security payments.”
The argument in (1) and the concomitant model of the world also imply an answer to the problem addressed by Burnham. That is, to the question why myth , brainwashing and tradition apparently can move people more intensely, and evoke more of a spirit of sacrifice, than truths and ideals that directly relate to rationally formulated human wants and perspectives, at least those formulated by current liberals.
The relevant answer starts from the idea that it is already a priori improbable that man is in principle more “movable” by what is based on error and brainwashing such as myths about kings and the Mother of God, than by what is objectively true and/or morally elevated, on the condition that it is indeed important.
Further, it should be observed that the myths etc. Burnham refers to differ from the liberal items he mentions by the first category having something to do with the enduring, elevated and essential that vastly transcends the here and now and the incidental, such as transitory pleasures. Burnham’s “rightist” items are (purported to be) associated with the Absolute and Eternity – overcoming evil, the Kingdom of God, the immensely elevated –, though they cannot be based on any coherent experience or reason. On the contrary, the “liberal” ones will refer to a more pleasant life or “the disadvantaged”; nothing which transcends death and the whims of coincidence, and is on the level of Destiny. In all, good, evil, justice and long-term developments, in the modern liberal picture (also connected with reductionist science and philosophy), do not transcend the “down-to-earth” categories of local influences and frequent chance, which have little to do with whatever deep coherence, “karma” or any elevated Kingdom based on wisdom. Not even with what Hemingway once described as “an orgasm with which the Earth seemed trembling.”
The above elucidates what is lacking in both semi-postmodern liberalism and traditionalism. That is, some dimension of what is both scientifically true or real and at the same time causes us to feel God speaking to us in terms like “I neither play dice, nor can I be outwitted”, in showing us some glimpse of His Kingdom, say, by making us intuitively sense Coherence from seeing a majestic sunset over the sea, or by an awesome “nonlocality” as Hemingway referred to.
Actually, though ideologists throughout history manipulated us into associating our most intensive emotions, hope and susceptibility to the elevated and the awesome with dogma, the Mother of God or the power of kings, this does not undo the fact that man can also experience the elevated by things that are scientifically true rather than myths.
Why not secularise the Kingdom to the idea of coherent progress and evolution, heaven to parapsychological research into a possible hereafter, and the idea of Karma to deep nonlocal coherence? Why could our sense of elevation and hope not survive the process? The only condition is the vindication of our preliminarily unproved hypothesis of “God’s not playing dice” indeed, neither here and now nor on the nonlocal level. Such further abandonment of chance, even nonlocally, is precisely in the spirit of science and rationalism, just as in that of religion. Why would destiny not obey laws, just as a molecule? Why, finally, experiences like the Hemingway one, or the sunset, or being moved by music, should be fundamentally less associated with the Sacred and the enduring than the myths at stake?
2. Most flawed ideology and philosophies of life, and the relativization of good and evil, stem from the woolliness idea, which amounts to the devaluation of truth
Any woolliness – fuzziness, contingency, subjective values,… – of the universe would in many cases allow an individual to uphold his own interpretation of truth, good and evil without reason and science could ever refute this. Then, reason would be fundamentally helpless against much evil and prejudice. This would also imply much room for both postmodernism and giving cultural convention the status of truth.
In comparison with the realistically four-dimensional deterministic world in which also both moral values and human choice are defined by objective relations among the facts – the former specifically by what processes optimise well-being –, the woolly alternative represents a kind of Many-worlds universe whose implausibility is implied by the mere Ockham’s razor argument. (Apart from experimental refutations of free will, such as the Libet one referred to above.) The definite-world position also contains that individual “free choices” as to value, action and interpretation, and also all preferred “stories” about the world, can ultimately be explained scientifically as sub-phenomena, rather than representing separate additional and complicating versions of truth. Still, remind from 1. (1) above that as yet science should also leave open the possibility that, though being unambiguously defined by four-dimensional realism, the universe is less than-optimally coherent. That is, though being completely defined by four-dimensional realism, it is not completely so by four-dimensional natural law.
We see come under the woolly conception all indeterministic, subjectivist, relativistic and fuzziness-implying philosophies of life and the world, from postmodernism and existentialism to anthroposophy. On the other hand, not every deterministic model is scientifically based; e.g., compare the Calvinist predestination idea.
Partly summarizing, we can say:
* To some degree, man has by nature deep and enduring longings and emotions which may be associated with the elevated, with beauty (of nature, of art, of human beings,…), or with the ideas of destiny, deep truths, virtue and overcoming evil.
* Especially in former times the leaders used to manipulate such longings, emotions etc. into associations with status-quo-friendly ideology and institutions (kings, the Church, tradition,…).
* In our modern anti-authoritarian, relativistic and consumptive era the contrast of good and evil, overcoming the latter, the elevated, and the dimensions of destiny and moral purification do not very well fit in with the atmosphere of the here-and-now, satiety, the incidental and amusement (that often substitutes happiness). Neither, egalitarianism as well as emphasizing coincidence does help in stimulating enduring values and motivations of existence. Within this scope, also think of the relevant developments in their role with respect to the dimension of tragedy.
Now compare the liberal values Burnham referred to earlier. Also compare here Nietzsche, who referred to modern man’s alienation from his instincts. Even the instinct of self-preservation is seriously undermined with liberals (Weimar, Munich, Iran, softness on crime,…).
* In coherence with what we discussed earlier, and contrary to both the liberal-leftist and the mythical-traditionalist position, we consider a situation in which an emotional sense of elevation is neither invested in myth or influential institutions, nor diluted into the personal and every-day life. We conceive of a “scientifization of the Kingdom of God”, in which deep longings and elevation, formerly associated with traditional concepts and myth, are coherently connected with more realistic things that, still, vastly transcend every-day matters. Think of the ideas of evolution and progress (“God’s Plan”), in coherence with massive scientific research into the nature of consciousness and the brain, the meaning of existence and a possible life after death. That is, simply into the foundations of nature, those of man and his highest qualities included. At the same time, nothing is wrong with, say, symbolizing the elevated, deep laws of destiny, and an ultimate overcoming of evil by “the Spirit of the universe” (“God”) – that is, such universe’s complex of coherent laws – or something like Jesus. The above means that, in conceiving an impressive and also morally elevated model of the world, we substitute science and coherence for sorcery and illusion. Why couldn’t the former deserve emotions and sacrifices once evoked by or made in the name of myth?
In all, there is no basic problem with firmly connecting in our psyche deep and nonlocal laws of nature, scientific insights, the vital, and the dimension of purpose, meaning and the elevated (which also contains high-quality genes and values). We quote the Dutch theologian J.M.J. de Jongh: “It may very well be that love stems from hormones; the greater should be our respect for hormones.”
In our realizing the foregoing, we in the modern West can overcome decadence and regain vigour derived from both fundamental emotions and enlightened reason. Those who don’t understand simply have no idea what concepts like progress, beauty and the elevated amount to.
Essentially, the woolly school of thought and the reductionist version of rationalism make very similar logical errors, which amount to restricting the realm of science and coherent laws of nature to only limited domains of phenomena. The “woollies” violate Taine’s “There is nothing but facts and relations between facts” as well as Einstein’s “God does not play dice” (indeterminism, fuzziness,…). Reductionists deem the world to work chaotically in the macro domain, such as with respect to evolution, purpose, human destiny,… As regards these, it considers the power of natural laws to radically fall short in enforcing coherence.
Actually, the woolly school alleges man to be partially above science, whereas the reductionists simply ignore the nonlocal dimensions of natural laws as they have been found rather recently in physics. (One specimen is the “Paradox of Einstein, Podolsky and Rosen”.)
3. Many interests prefer woolliness, which joins with the religion of man and/or the group
In our page Current Religious Orthodoxy: "The Group" as Supreme Being, and in various other ones, we referred to the idea of the secularisation of the mythical God in heaven into man or society: the projection was pulled back.
The basic controversy underlying the heresies of my work as contrasted with both postmodernist and traditionalist ideas – with the Relativism-Uncertainty (RU) paradigm [see Paradigm in Default], woolliness, and irrational authority – essentially amounts to one thing: my distrust of what is merely based on subjective, individual or collective, “free choices” that cannot be justified by coherent rational argument. Think of many conventional values, relativism and acquiescing in a lot of social abuses.
In my opinion, the simplest and most coherent hypothesis explaining the prevalence in the intellectual discussion of the woolly model of the world, the RU paradigm and the “religion of man” is one reducing such prevalence to some main causes:
(1) The self-dramatization and arrogance of man, who wants to be above natural law. If you start from men and their subjective life-worlds, you need not be in a hurry to abandon your prejudices, (self)deceit and immoral propensities.
(2) Another cause amounts to a variant of Schelsky’s idea that ideologists will distrust technology because it makes man less dependent on the superior powers of nature and, as a consequence, less eager for the messages of the ideologists. In line with such idea, man’s dependence on uncertainty, chance, and the vicissitudes inherent in the woolly model, will again make him more dependent on his environment and, as a result, on the certainties and hope provided by convention, ideology and the collective. Also, his concomitant anxiety will make him more accessible to what power or “game players” want.
Also note that progress is comparable with technology as to its relation to the interests of ideologists. This once more illustrates why the “woolly conception” and its implied relativism, anti-rationalism and incoherence are attractive to the disseminators of myth and ideology, viz. for the same reasons why (contrasting) progress is not.
(3) The massive interest of many individuals and powerful groups in a world in which “das Menschliche, Allzumenschliche” (Nietzsche) is shielded and disguised, and our own moral weakness, whims, prejudices, subjective values and various interests need not legitimize themselves rationally, and our “free will” is autonomous.
A particular case as regards ideology that cannot be legitimized by reason is egalitarianism, which presupposes much relativism and fuzziness about the moral and genetic qualities, inter alia, of many “disadvantaged”. Also think of the dubious or even perverted moral standards underlying various taboos, “abstract art”, the juridical domain or snobbery. Further, think of what amounts to the basic moral flaw – i.e., not directly associating suffering and frustration with evil and happiness with the morally positive –, which presupposes much woolliness in thought, emotion and basic concepts.
In all, many will prefer much latitude for their “free will” and preferences, also as to values, purpose, ideology and various implicit cultural conventions.
The most basic point is that those intuitively having an aversion from our no longer being frustrated by ignorance and inadequate technology – that is, those not liking the world to be brought under rational and moral control – have an inherent interest in woolliness. Accordingly, they are often very tolerant and soft as to evil, anti-social behaviour, chaos and uncertainty, up to and including Third-World value systems and corruption. Of course, all of this is at the cost of their fellow-men.
(4) The cult of the here and now, the spontaneous and the spirit of the sixties also fits in the above context, just as “taking man and society as they are”, permissiveness and a precedence of the social environment on genes.
(5) Society, organisations and (even) science became more and more complicated, bureaucratic, and teamwork- and network-oriented. This invites an attitude of “many worlds”, mutual dependence, adjustment and relativism and, of course, an aversion from putting whatever cat among whatever pigeons. Within this scope, woolliness and the RU paradigm are very suitable for running with the hare and hunting with the hounds. At the same time, they join with massive conformism and other-directedness, which serve survival in organizations.
For me personally, an emotional reason for not subscribing to woolliness, uncertainty, relativism and the free-will idea – on top of my scientific objections – is that both the free will of my fellow-men and a fundamental contingency and uncertainty in general very logically arouse anxiety in me: my destiny would co-depend on whims and inimical values rather than Einstein’s God Who does not play dice. Not even with such destiny, I hypothesize.
Additionally, both history and elementary fantasy abundantly show the sad consequences of one’s abandoning the objective moral guidelines of integrity and men doing well to each other. That is, they show how irrational not only dogma but also relativism is.
Within the above scope, my also emotionally based aversion to woolliness and the RU paradigm is connected with the all-important dimension of injustice, suffering and tragedy. If in the last resort the universe would leave any “avoidable” latitude to these, or relativized them, instead of the case that they – as a sine qua non for evolution – ultimately serve a valuable purpose (or at least are logically bound to appear), the world no longer would fill me with any awe or respect. Its laws would be incomplete as regards the most vital point; “God” would be unreliable as to the all-important things if tragedy had no imperative function, say, in “overcoming”. He would even be so if His laws would not transcend local causal determinism, lacking the nonlocal coherence indispensable for defining ultimate results too. The above also means that rationalism and determinism need not contrast with a religious philosophy, on the condition that they transcend locality and reductionism. Then, they may mean “God without sorcery”.
4. A philosophy of macro coherent evolution and concomitant values is also associated with substituting hedonism by long-term purposes
Current socio-political ideas and practices also highly reflect short-term thinking, meaninglessness and incoherence as they are implied by “woolly philosophy” and the RU paradigm. Part and parcel of this is the establishment – including the intelligentsia – being much more attuned to every-day problems, policies and interests than contributing to a solution of the problems of life. Such solution also means scientific research into the brain, consciousness, genes, sexuality, anxiety, evil, and a possible afterlife. Further, think of far more priority to the enforcement of integrity, fighting injustice and uncertainty, improving the love market etcetera. That is, to happiness and progress (rather than amusement). Still, essential is devoting much more energy to fundamental (and other) scientific research and development. In this context, also think of the massive proportion of energy and money now devoted to both the luxuries of the rich and allowing many “disadvantaged” to live according to non-“bourgeois” values. Within this scope, note that currently a large majority of American women indicated their most preferred activity to be shopping.
Genome, NASA and Manhattan-like projects, massive research into nuclear fusion and the above-mentioned fundamental research should again employ “the best and the brightest” rather than our “wasting many of them in the juridical or financial sectors”. Note here that Nobel laureate Robert Solov found that it is techno-science which fosters the economy most (apart from the problems of life).
In short, let us give precedence to the long term, also in shifting our best intellect toward fundamental research. We see here one of the points in which “free enterprise” is inferior to some particular kinds of cooperation of business and government, such as appeared too in World War II, when it was needed in order to subordinate everything else to winning it. (By the way, total US production doubled by such cooperation!) We should introduce a similar policy, now substituting winning the war by pushing progress as indicated. Both most Ferrari’s and welfare to low-IQ teen-age mothers can wait.
Actually, our proposal is in line with a more general subordination of special interests to the common good (that also refers to the enduring), the failure of whose implementation is now the weakest point of our semi-democracy. Realise that the relevant hierarchical coordination of interests and priorities is essentially a moral problem; that is, one of balancing amounts of (un)happiness. Hence, emphasizing moral values ultimately implies giving priority to the above program.
Contrary to doing so, current leftists and intellectuals will more and more shift their interest to the consumption and “pop” levels of happiness, in addition to humouring many kinds of rearguards. Also within this scope, they even abandoned exposing manipulation and taboo. In this context, most revealing of all is their abandoning the ideas of eugenics and even progress. One major cause of such betrayal is their entanglement with large bureaucracies and formalistic-juridical ways of thinking, both of which contrast with vision, dynamics and core priorities. Actually, our society drowns in complication, procedure, details-mongering, special interests, and a host of juridical, voice and participation rights which also represent woolliness in practice, and that throttle dynamics as well as even the idea of the large projects enunciated above. There is a massive deadweight between government and the free market! Also think here of most restrictive practices and work rules in industry, labour, trade and agriculture; they will benefit special interests and frustrate efficiency and dynamics. It speaks volumes as to power relations that it appears very difficult to abolish some of them.
5. Various complements and remarks
Once evil was highly integrated in the
socio-cultural order; currently it will disguise itself in many mazes,
coincidence, relativism, and “rights” to not cooperate, say, in finding the
truth or enforcing integrity.
1. The greatest perfidies
of the right are:
a) The idea that an individual should be so much solidary with his socio-cultural environment, such as traditions or country, as to be willing to make great sacrifices for them, in spite of their merit not being based on any rational footings;
(b) The second greatest historically recent perfidy is frustrating sexual morality, the repression of women included.
The greatest perfidies of the left are:
a) Moral relativism;
b) The idea that all individuals are morally and genetically of an equal value, and are defined by “nurture” rather than “nature”. In both a) and b) conformism is inherent: the lonely dissident is never objectively right.
2. Most people look for support and allies rather than truth and justice. As a consequence, they squirm to the utmost in order to belong. Probably, the most important cause of such attitude is (un)conscious anxiety and aggression by frustrations, the most important of which seem to me being the moral ones caused by a shortage of justice, and the sexual ones caused by a shortage of positively attractive potential mates.
3. As to anxiety, I myself have little to learn from the conformists. In contrast with them, however, my reaction is not mimicry but trying to expose the mentality and abuses causing it, and my looking forward to progress. Most “belongers” will lack the intuitive, moral and intellectual vigour to do so.
4. Once God was always right and infallible. In the minds of most people, culture, the right-minded, “the group” as a whole, and long-standing convention succeeded God as to this. Both kinds of belief are at the core of “Machiavellian tricks” by means of which the status quo and the establishment maintained power and privilege.
5. The quality of mankind can be seen from the difficulty of founding Utopia. It can also be inferred from the circumstance that the “realists”, who acquiesce in so many social evils and don’t like any radical enforcement of integrity, not even show emotional disgust with respect to such abuses.
6. Most speechmakers say that social evils will simply be incidental errors or “unintended results” of positive strivings or values, rather than (unconsciously) “conspiratorial”. Why, then, they are far from being in a hurry to correct such abuses? They do not even react to my “politely calling attention to them”! Actually, their (non)reaction corresponds to my violating a taboo. Indeed, the abuses are shielded by taboos, by repressing any relevant discussion.
As an example, consider education. Is it a coincidence that other-directedness got precedence on the intellectual, that the “spontaneous” and a bias toward consumption got it on discipline, egalitarianism on “performance ethic”, and, finally, project learning and “discovering things by yourself” on transparency and coherence? Or does a general philosophy underlie all of this: the idea of group-mindedness, conformism, anti-intellectualism and a primacy of the here-and-now and consumption? The relevant interests are evident.
7. Most “deprivilegedness”, in both the Third World and Western underclasses, has a mere few causes: inferior genes (such as implying a low IQ) and inferior values (causing incoherent, non-“bourgeois” ways of life). Among the consequences: much corruption, a frequent lack of compassion (crime, inconvenience,…) and an absence of independent thinking and initiative. Our own liberal intellectuals, adversary culture (Bohemian artists), helping bureaucracy, and relativists do their utmost to propagate the idea that nothing is wrong with Third-World cultures, the values or genes of our anti-socials and squatters, etcetera. (As regards the genes in most Third-World countries, see R. Lynch and T. Vanhanen: IQ and the Wealth of Nations, 2002.)
Theodore Dalrymple was right in his Life at the Bottom: The Worldview that makes the Underclass (2001), but he did not address the genetic and the Third-World sides of the problem. (His main thesis is that the main source of underclasses is the ideology of our politically correct intelligentsia teaching rearguards that they themselves can do little about their situation.)
8. For many, being culturally innovative or socially revolutionary transformed out of existence into writing gibberish such as James Joyce did, producing “abstract” paintings, wearing tatty clothes or cultivating a Bohemian way of life. Innovation, from showing or producing order in a new – more beautiful or more efficient – way, degenerated into being incoherent in an “original” mode. In such manner one can both taste champagne on a beer budget and spare the status quo.
9. Well-meaning people always feel you should need the Other(s), even as the main source of your values and ideals. Could it be that they do so because they themselves are those Other(s)?
10. Political correctness is a mere prototypical specimen of what far more generally is wrong with modern speech-makers and establishments. That is, the “correct” are hardly ever fond of infringing on “solidarity” (conformity), or of whatever catharsis. (They will not even like catharsis in the arts; hence a bias for the “abstract” variant.) They will always appease, relativize, shield or disguise most kinds of evil and inferiority. Most of all, they do so with respect to inferior genes or value systems and, of course, to vested interests. “Black-and-white thinking” and “cut-and-dried solutions” are kept at arm’s length.
All of this virtually amounts to abandoning the moral dimension to the benefit of the status quo; that is, of power, vested interests and (therefore) socio-cultural appeasement. In no way anyone is ever responsible or inferior, it is always circumstances, poverty, or discrimination; only nurture, never nature. Neither social evils stem from our leaders and their disguisedly wrong values or interests, nor have some problem groups inferior genes. Of course, applying lie-detection or eugenics is utterly taboo. On the one hand as a consequence of a more general anti-red-thread (anti-enlightened) and anti-evolutionary mentality. On the other hand as inherent in the “religion of man”, which also goes to perverse lengths in objections to things like an obligatory kicking the habit by addicts, obligatory treatment and medication of problem cases and obligatory sterilization of retarded and people with congenital personality disorders. (Many wrongly blame me for giving priority to the individual at the cost of the community; now compare the above as a specimen of radically doing so by my very antipodes.)
11. Our basic failure is not having substituted old-time convention and hope by equally vital enlightened values. We merely let the former erode. Neither did we succeed in coherently integrating our instincts, reason and emotions of the elevated: Freud’s Id, Ego and Super-Ego. Freud himself even postulated their basic mutual conflict and, additionally, that the Super-Ego is exclusively a question of “nurture” rather than also depending on evolving genes, like the Ego.
The consequences are relativism, other-directedness, defeatism, bureaucracy rather than dynamic purpose and ideals, softness on crime and moral rearguards, and a Chamberlain approach towards the enemies of enlightened civilization.
Within this scope, we see little compassion with the victims of aggression or of a lack of integrity, from crime to social abuse.
In the same vein there is not much interest in eugenics or even the idea of progress at all, both of which contrast with basically relativistic egalitarianism.
The above summarizes current decadence by which also vital instincts and performance massively drain into sports, and subtle emotions into incoherent art and snobbery.
One more concomitant of the foregoing is that the values and preferences of rearguard groups (qua IQ or “g-factor”, the lowly-educated) get more and more influence; think of rap, yelling and body-twisting musicians, graffiti,… Small wonder that “racism” and “discrimination” are the cardinal sins in this climate.
12. Some specimens of widespread policy or mentality alarm me particularly. Among them:
* The authorities releasing multi-offenders even after their umpteenth sentence, not even deporting foreigners among them.
* The usual treatment of whistle-blowers, which is tolerated by the law.
* Our establishment’s obvious indifference as to the dysgenics implied by the lowly-educated on average having more children than the highly-educated. In the same vein it represses the obvious genetic factor in the considerable differences as to educational and economic performance of various social or ethnic groups.
* Laws permitting a defendant’s and lawyers’ non-cooperation in finding the truth.
* Our speech-makers’ general objection to eugenics and even to the obligatory sterilization of congenitally mentally disturbed and multi-offenders.
* Relativism, egalitarianism and a permissive “nurture position” in the first place.
Why those phenomena should alarm all of us? They should highly alarm us because they emanate downright nihilism; that is, the refusal to side with good – with integrity, compassion with victim and moral and genetic quality – against evil and psycho-biological errors.
13. What a pity that those many literary authors and philosophers who incessantly emphasize the negative – frustration, futility, chaos and hopelessness – hardly ever prepare for fighting such unhappiness.
Even worse, they do not even appear to be encouraged as to this by the substantial material and moral progress societies organised according to its principles witnessed since the Enlightenment. Actually, this strongly suggests that the above-mentioned authors essentially like the negative and thrive on defeatism about it. The most obvious explanation is their implicit message to be part and parcel of the more general reactionary (anti-red-thread) orthodoxy that serves the status quo.
14. Even in serious media the attention paid to sports, fashion, actors, guitar-players and the “pop” and “light amusement” scenes in general inflated. This is part and parcel of an entertainment- and image-biased mass culture that emphasizes the incidental, egalitarianism (mediocrity), and superficial extravert other-directedness rather than substantial argument and enduring values and purpose.
Sociology does not even study this kind of things…
15. A vital current taboo is repressing the insight that social abuses have seldom causes other than genetic and/or moral failings, and that it is rather easy to get rid of them once one really wants so. Both the purported “difficulty” of abolishing evils and the taboo are major instruments of those who have an interest in the abuses’ continuation.
The essential way in which political correctness joins with the above and fosters pervasive conformism is via an umpteenth variant of “solidarity” (after or in addition to ethnic, national, religious, class or other ones), around egalitarianism and kindred relativism. Genetic or moral inferiority is no longer an explanatory option as to individual or group failings… Only “nurture”, coincidence and “inadvertent consequences of good intentions” will be accepted. Nobody has bad intentions; not even unconsciously; no one has faulty genes… It is the kindest and the softest way of smothering social criticism. Almost all of us take refuge with the new God: “Us”, solidarity, relations, consensus, the other-directed attitude… The ultimate sin became giving offence to some section of the comprehensive network.
16. Partly joining with 15. is:
Group-mindedness and conformism – euphemisms: “unity” and “solidarity” – are the main instruments of both irrational power and an anti-enlightened spirit more generally. For they tend to repress socio-cultural criticism. That is, most people’s need for belonging will keep even intellectuals from “the controversial”: from exposing abuses, from thinking autonomously, and from ever criticising “Us”. Debunking whatever group or interest – whatever part of Us –, within this scope, is betrayal of what the Queen, the national soccer team or “our kind of people” stand for.
Much of the foregoing is associated with current secularised religion: the cult of Man, in the sense that He is purported to be inviolable, that nobody is an error of evolution, and that, in the last resort, He is above science (free will, “Unique Existential Being”,…). This religion not only taboos eugenics (“offensive to man as he is”) but also opposes radically negative judgments with respect to any subgroup (compare below). Nobody radically fails except by environmental circumstances (“nurture”). Psychopaths, multi-offenders, chronic problem cases,… are Unique Beings too; they should not be removed from society for good or excluded from procreation. Our idolatry (secularised religion) not only bans “racism” – even in the sense of recognizing that Jews, gentiles, blacks, Japanese,… show variations as to their average congenital IQ’s and other faculties – but also any “discriminating” judgments about other subgroups, which are inviolable too: all of us should be “solidary”. Only the victims of the miscreants are largely excluded in actual practice…
17. Sociology is highly about (serving or counteracting) interests. Therefore, a social theory has no chance of being near to the mark if no one takes offence. Few current theories have the honour…
18. What’s wrong with liberalism and the “progressive” intelligentsia can be summarized in a nutshell:
(1) More than others, they oppose toppling the ayatollah regime in Iran by the US. Also emotionally, they seem to hate Western dominance more than the fundamentalists, Saddam Hussein, or Libyan, Sudanese, Saudi-Arabian and other cruel Third-World regimes.
(2) Genetic progress referring to man is not precisely their first priority. In actual fact, they abandoned the idea of some people being genetically inferior to others and, therewith, the idea of human genetic quality in the first place.
(3) Their relativism – morally and as to human quality – causes them to be reserved with respect to fighting evil in general, up to and including as regards the competences of investigators and the police.
(4) They will systematically excuse human shortcomings – emphasizing “nurture” rather than “nature” – and humour lower-class value systems in which the here and now prevails on delayed gratification. Or, they sympathize with a Bohemian (sixties’) attitude preferring incoherence (up to and including incoherence in the arts) to being on one’s way to something important. Within this scope they even refuse to enforce “bourgeois-like” values upon the underclass, acquiescing in its sponging from the community.
In all, they represent group-mindedness (“nurture”) and the reader of the sports page (the values of here-and-now simpletons) rather than the Enlightenment, progress or Prometheus…
19. What a nitwits Schopenhauer, Kierkegaard, Kafka, Wittgenstein and many other cultural leaders were by their not intelligently exposing the sexual morality of their times by which they themselves and many others suffered so much! What a super-nitwits they were by not even making a stand against the national wars, the nationalism at all and the quasi-democracy of such period!
20. A mere few arguments suffice in order to show how radically we are controlled by an oligarchy of colluding big interests:
Political parties will formulate their ideas and aims in vague, non-controversial terms without concretely criticising those of others. Publicly asking each other questions like the following is nearly unthinkable:
“Why did you acquiesce in multi-offenders to be released time and again?”
“Why did you allow so many low-IQ immigrants to enter the country?”
“Why do you oppose euthanasia for the irreversibly demented?”
Power will prevail on truth; parties will “smoothen away” from their programs everything that may cost votes by its “controversial” nature, rather than being straightforward.
In the same vein, the media will seldom criticise each other, for example, as to their news coverage and comments. In such sense they constitute a cartel of ideas. The competition of ideas commercialised and “de-rationalised” to a high degree: vague slogans or the spirit of the TV commercial call the tune. “Ideas” are sold like fashion or pop products: by manipulating images and unconscious emotions. It’s no longer sound arguments that compete but money, organisation (relations) and “political skill” (manipulative faculties). The establishment – that overpowers all others on these three points – has no serious and well-organised enemies (anymore); non-conformism has been integrated, just as “protest” writers and singers.
The collusion meant above can also be inferred from the circumstance that whistle-blowers will have much difficulty in finding a good job elsewhere, if necessary.
One more specimen of it is that the “democratic” governments did not even ask the pope after WWII why he kept silent during the Holocaust.
Finally: can it be mere coincidence, rather than one more example of taboo-generating collusion, that so few ridicule Beuys, Cage and Rauschenberg in public, whereas many do so in private?
Conclusion: Since power, money and organisation will have more weight than finding and formulating the truth as you yourself see it, vested interests will prevail on ideas and independent thought. Only Galbraith’s “onslaught of circumstance” will eventually bring evil down.
21. The poor do not primarily need help, but a better value system. Theodore Dalrymple (Life at the Bottom: The Worldview that Makes the Underclass; Chicago, 2001) showed this convincingly. If bourgeois values combined with a little help do not make things better with them, the problem cannot be but their genes…
22. Our intelligentsia and cultural leaders are lacking in warmth towards anything precious to them, lacking in hope of progress that brings it in a safe haven, and in enthusiasm about developing science and expanding the coherence of the world that make possible such progress. Instead, they prefer Beckett and Foucault, postmodernism and defeatism. Apparently, the totalitarians highly succeeded in dropping from the agenda faith, hope and love. Their cynicism lives on to the present…
23. There’s a common reason why so many are against or sceptical about the Enlightenment, disinterested in progress, opposed to eugenics, against Western values dominating others, and why they sympathise with the underclass and excuse its values, why they are soft on crime, social evils and low-IQ immigration, why they are relativists or subjectivists, and like incoherent art and the idea of a “chaotic universe” without meaning and, finally, why they prefer “nurture” to “nature”. They simply have an interest in darkness and “lawlessness”. That is, in troubled waters, uncertainty and, therefore, anxiety and an escape for those who are wrong. Therefore, they also prefer that man’s (or society’s, or culture’s) “free choice” and arbitrariness to a high degree prevail on coherent laws of nature, of evolution, of history and of good and evil. Louis XIV, Pius IX, sexual repression and modern incoherent adversary culture and their mentality or purport were/are all related to the relevant interests.
24. Indeed, the low-IQ variant of stupidity is a deplorable thing. It refers to one’s lacking in sensing coherence, to which lacking in intelligence amounts.
Even worse is a more basic variant embodied by experiencing life and the world as wholes incoherently: living in terms of the here-and-now and chaotic incidents. This is the way of inner life modern art and philosophy suggest to be obvious or advisable: abandoning the ideas of enduring values, evolution, a hierarchy of natural laws, and also deep laws of history and of destiny. Such kind of incoherence is even more fundamental than the down-to-earth variant rated by a low IQ. It is the notion that understandable models of nature, good and evil are less important than impressions and sensations, the accidental and the spontaneous.
This actually lower-class way of thinking became endemic among our intelligentsia, within the scope of its turning away from the Enlightenment, coherence and the idea of progress during the past century. Postmodernism, “Cobra” and Schönberg are mere extremes of such attitude…
25. Nazism called up more enthusiasm than the Weimar Republic, Napoleon did better than “La Déclaration des Droits de l’homme”, pop stars draw more cheers than the idea of progress, and political correctness is more popular than eugenics, because well-organized interests (financial, bureaucratic, military, relatiocratic or institutional power) manipulating primary emotions or selfishness will in the short term outdo long-term rational ideals.
26. Rational argument and rational (objective) values constitute the strongest weapons of the individual against the superior power of “the others”, their values and their taboos. Of course, the mandarins sense this too. Small wonder that even in modern times “the orthodoxy” (socio-cultural correctness) concentrates on undermining or relativizing precisely reason and rational values. (Think of existentialism up to and including postmodernism, of Foucault up to and including Wittgenstein.) A similar manipulation occurs on the emotional level: the mandarins, after ages of fighting sexuality, now actively or passively drain away emotions and strivings toward “imponderables in the nth dimension” (Veblen’s expression), such as sports or incoherent modern art. Also within this scope, novel-writing became largely irrelevant, defeatist and harmless: hopelessness, incoherent lives, casual relations, the here and now,…
In short: reason, coherence and progress constitute my principal defence against the jungle, irrational power and arbitrariness. Hence, the mandarins don’t stop relativizing them, and hush up everything explained here.
27. Among the ideologies that are even worse than the new (post-1960s) left is the old (pre-1960s) right. For the rest, they have in common the idea that cultural or emotional conventions or biases even in principle could have a right to prevail over rational values which put first and foremost optimising total well-being. Both excuse prejudice by the number of its adherents or “the spirit of the times”, and are not in a hurry to scrutinise paradigms. In all, man and conventional wisdom as they manifest themselves here and now are often allowed to prevail on reason, on science and on their criticism of cultural values and conventions. Current philosophy is even little more than defending or excusing such position, that is, “philosophical group-mindedness” or conformism. Further, as to the emotional, don’t forget an age-long association of sexuality with “the lower instincts” and aggression rather than beauty and good quality.
28. The nearly all-embracing socio-cultural controversy throughout history refers to whether either independent reason – also as to values and purposes – or caste power, convention and group solidarity should have the last word. This controversy highly coincides with the one meant in “The open society and its enemies” (Popper). It has also much to do with the relation of the individual and the community. The rights and duties of both are defined – and exclusively defined – by the ultimate moral value and obligation: optimise total happiness and minimize unhappiness, independently of other considerations like convention, dogma, vested interests or whatever. The community should do its utmost to increase total well-being (and should have corresponding competences), which also implies furthering progress and freedom. Within this scope, it should be “in a state of war” with criminals and others who will increase unhappiness (such as many fundamentalists, censors, cartels and various other vested interests).
The above neither implies radical individualism nor any group dominance or solidarity other than one attuned to optimum happiness. Among the implied main values: integrity, love of one’s neighbour, and progress up to and including genetic variants (genetic engineering and eugenics).
29. Related to 27. and 28. is the question: Why my work does so radically contrast with the orthodoxy and the speech-makers on so many subjects at the same time? The answer is: because of a fundamental difference as to the way of thinking. My putting first and foremost reason and “the beta approach” is also characterised by a fundamental disrespect leading to a rejection of dogma, repression and taboo. For, the very essence of these is their not (wholly) admitting rational argument to some problems, ideas or subjects in general. The establishment, ideology and the speech-making community often do exactly this within the scope of vested interests, convention, or paradigms. Hence sexual repression, the oppression of women, dying for King and Country, dogmatic religion, racism, conventional class privileges, anti-rationalistic philosophies, radical relativism, incoherent (“modern”) art, hushing up fundamental dissent, anti-intellectualistic (“progressive”) education, opposition to abortion, euthanasia and eugenics, and a host of other unenlightened positions that can only be maintained on the condition of repressing, tabooing, or basically relativizing reason and its consequences for our values and ways of thinking and living.
30. What a poor souls our cultural leaders are! Confronted with nihilism or the jungle, they’ve a mere two value systems on hand: a progressive one around “the disadvantaged” and “all people are essentially good and valuable”, and one reverting to old conventions or myths. There’s hardly any competition as to something purported to be better.
31. If I shared with many opponents their relativism, their scepticism as to progress, and their idea that the world is a coincidence rather than meaningful, I would keep stuffing my mouth with chocolate. That’s exactly what we see around us…
This constitutes a major problem: mankind will degenerate if no “system” could be found that satisfies our emotions, our innate conscience and our intelligence. You saw I feel there is one: impressive and coherent truth. Myth, ideology and superstition will less and less do.
32. There are radically perverse aspects even of relatively advanced cultures. For example, ours tabooed a major source of happiness like sexuality for ages. Currently, it does so with respect to a vital truth about man: that individuals (and, on a statistical basis, also various groups) differ much in genetic quality, which is responsible for most crime, addiction and other evils. People will accept the relevant superstitions or ideology because of their socially and/or intellectually being no match for well-organised elites. Also, most of them are hardly interested in truth and arguably better values: they want to belong, status, career, money…, and relativize, manipulate or ignore good and evil.
That’s an essential problem of life.
33. Wrongly, society is a social game rather than a struggle for truth and progress. The priorities in such game are mutual recognition, often irrational togetherness, image and career rather than straightforwardness and integrity. Accordingly, we see a general avoidance of “the controversial” that might spoil the game. The result is an atmosphere of humouring everything influential, of repression, hypocrisy, “correctness” and taboo.
34. Egalitarianism is popular because the stupid feel flattered whereas the smart don’t feel offended because they don’t take the idea seriously in the first place…
For the rest, it is a major drawback of egalitarianism and the related relativism (think of its devaluing virtue, superiority, performance and “distinction” in general) that they reduce the positive effects of psychological rewards, such as well-deserved social status and self-esteem, which are vital for stimulating human quality and performance.
35. In the Victorian age many sacrificed their sexual instincts on behalf of a crazy ideology. Currently, in turn, the instinct of self-preservation is massively sacrificed by those who acquiesce in the immigration of millions from Third-World countries where the average IQ is 85 (or less; see Lynn & Vanhanen: IQ and the Wealth of Nations, 2002) and values will be primitive compared with ours. Small wonder that the relevant immigrants statistically disproportionately often sponge from welfare or commit crimes.
This time, the crazy ideologies are egalitarianism and a disregard of the part played by genes.
36. Romanticism, as flourishing in the 19th century and also in the 1960s, and philosophically and historically contrasting with the Enlightenment, virtually amounts to acquiescing in playing dice with passion and destiny. Essentially, it abandons to the jungle tragedy and the dramatic, struggle and death, the indescribable and utter emotion: it abandons them to chance, arbitrariness and incoherence. This as contrasted with the enlightened aim of bringing life and destiny optimally under rational and moral control, which also makes the world more dependable for fragile and languishing souls. Romanticism is the jungle on the level of man’s higher emotions and faculties, and also “chaotizes” passion, lust, and aggression. It is betraying universal values.
What’s lacking in Nietzsche, in nationalists, in Ernst Jünger and in those not looking for rational and even sublime Laws of Destiny is the essence of what makes man good: compassion.
Romanticism contrasts with both any enlightened “organization of happiness” and the idea of “Unhappiness comes from wrong calculations” (Galilei with Brecht), or from wrong moral choices.
Remark: It should be noted that this item 36. refers to Romanticism as a philosophy and attitude to life. In any case, the negative aspects here did not prevent many romanticists from producing beautiful art!
37. As soon as the law and the juridical become complicated, and “the industry” expands ever more, it is a symptom of their abandoning their basic task: being allies of good against evil, whose contrast is seldom complicated.
Current hypertrophy of the domain of law and lawyers stems from the bureaucratisation of society and the formalization of so many academics’ and businessmen’s thought and moral notions.
38. Leftists and liberals purport to stand up for the underdog and the victimized.
If this were correct, they would launch a true witch-hunt against criminals, against aggression at home, at school, at work and on TV, against manipulation and lack of integrity, against hushing up the truth, against hazing freshmen, against those who regularly cause inconvenience and against victimizers at all.
Rather than relativism, the contrast between good and evil should dominate their minds. In actual fact, the very opposite appears. They massively shield the “rights” of violent activists and squatters, and obstruct the conviction of evildoers by a cult of “privacy”, the right to silence and the like. They do not really hate them. Neither do they hate the opponents of euthanasia or of the death penalty for serial victimizers.
39. My theory containing that the red thread – progress as to reason and its applications, towards more rational values, and as regards the (average) coherence and subtlety of emotional life – constitutes the core of and the pre-eminent evolutionary line in history is so much self-evident that its not earlier awakening in sociology demonstrates an intense repression (by vested interests or other anti-enlightened forces). Something similar holds about the extreme absurdity of relativism – imagine an innocent on the rack! – and as to that of most sexual taboos of two millennia.
40. Paradoxically, many are less than enthusiastic about the idea of progress. This may be logically explainable by their deriving more satisfaction from the setbacks and failings of others than from their own successes and virtues (which, moreover, may easily be dreamed up). Within this scope, I myself have to admit that – let’s say – the amorality of my enemies, and their consistently repressing or hushing up almost everything important, gave me a lot of pleasure, also because of the implied forcing on me of feelings of superiority… (Many among such enemies even go as far as openly siding with evil, for example, by opposing the deportation of criminal foreigners.)
Fitting within the above scope of “satisfaction by others’ drawbacks” are results like that of Dutch econometrist Bernard M.S. van Praag to the effect that an average individual derives more satisfaction from
a) his own salary being reduced by $10,000 and that of comparable others diminishing by $25,000, than from
b) his own salary increasing by $10,000 and the incomes of comparable others rising by $25,000.
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