Fent wrote:It's just those bored with their plasma tvs, wines, coffees, playstations, and spectator sports. Plus a couple of misfits who rebel against authority for no other reason other than it being there.
I know these people because I used to be a leftist; not only that, I've been working and researching amongst them for 8 years.
I'll let you in on a little secret, and I'm rhetorically going to assume you've never been on a protest before.
They're actually a lot of fun! Sometimes I hear people making arrangements with others to attend one, and it's almost interchangeable with arranging to go to see a live band or go out to have fun in some other way. People dress up much more fancily and make their own creative props specially for the event - last time I saw a vulture, propped up high with poles (also used to flap its wings), with a pair of scissors as its head/beak - to symbolise the public sector cuts. And once you're actually there, it's the epitome of rabble rousing, it's absolutely about herd mentality and going along with the crowd - heckling those who support what you are protesting against and everything... It's disgraceful and contemptible behaviour, no question - but is it meaningless beyond these superficial boons for the masses, who are voluntarily getting up early and leaving their bored plasma tv/wine/coffee/playstation/spectator sport lifestyle for the day?
Absolutely not. We here may not be or feel part of the herd, but if you do not understand them you know very little.
Group dynamics are infamous for irrationality and inhumanity, earning them an association with the detrimental - when in fact they are simply ill understood. Research indicates that irrational choices are better made than rational ones IF
the variables are many and complex. Rationality is limited, but superior (only) within its limits, whereas irrationality is like a mediocre failsafe - even on an individual level, for example, neither fight nor flight may be the best option, but it is often wise. In a group, there exists a phenomenon known as "the wisdom of the crowd", where the group somehow arrives at a wise answer without necessarily using much rationality at all.
In short, there is a reason for group dynamics that is deeply ingrained in human evolution and survival through not only less rational times, but even to this day. An irrational mob can congregate for irrational reasons and still be onto something that not even the most rational minds might be able to understand. Individual mob members may even be pretty thick and clueless, yet with their collective cause particularly shrewd. So despite any thickness, they should not be patronised and disregarded - especially since they comprise the work force that keeps our economy going. They are not to be disregarded.
Invariably, protests involve anarchists who are often young teens who have issues with authority. They go off and cause some trouble, break some stuff and get arrested - and usually that's all you hear about the protest (which is one reason why they do it).
Most are just there for the organised bits in peaceful obedience, devoid of individual ideas, just adding to the numbers really (a very important role).
You also get Left Wing academics, who I attend with. The sharpest people you're ever likely to meet and very widely read. I'm not an academic but I fit in with them none the less, except when they keep referring to authors I've never heard of.
I get the feeling that you've forsaken the Left Wing largely due to its individual proponents. I don't blame you, the Left is not without its fools - the trick is to find the ones who really understand it rather than just use it to justify their feelings of revenge and inferiority. That's when you realise the real value of the Left. Otherwise you're just stuck in a scene which feels like it's going nowhere, and that's frustrating if you just want to get things done
. I also wonder if you abandoned your original way of thinking due to an inability to find compatibility between it and Nietzsche? I toyed with siding with the obvious right wing interpretation of Nietzsche for a while myself, but then I finally saw through it. Perhaps you can straighten this one out for me?
Fent wrote:If communisim doesn't need universal love to glue it together, then what does glue it together?
Of course it needs universal love as an ideal to perpetuate it. Yet, no one is going to help millions of people they have never met for no gain other than a warm fuzzy feeling inside. And at bottom this is why it is, and was, doomed to failure.
For as long as you have it in your head that the world owes you something, you will forever be disappointed.
Well, consider this. If the vast majority of people in a society never ever see the profit incentive in their entire life, simple working class folk who own nothing in their work environment at all - and little in their home life beyond a few material trinkets - what the hell keeps them glued together?!
They find work with people they've never met before, and yet they learn to work with and compete against them just fine. They work damn hard too and get things done, even if just in return for a vaguely liveable proportion of the value they work to add to their product/service...
The ONLY thing Capitalism has that Socialism and Communism do not is the profit incentive from the ownership of the means of production - and that's only for the relatively very few. Anything else is utterly compatible with Socialism and Communism.
But to gain
there is direct democracy rather than indirect (or none at all), a stake in the means of production that you are operating while at work (rather than none at all), more incentive to cooperate which is deeply ingrained in human social psychology - yet squandered under Capitalism in favour of relentless stress and competition (which can still be arranged under Socialism and Communism, without being mandatory for all like under Capitalism), access to much more levels of wealth than before with the greater levels of efficiency that would result from streamlining an overly competitive and inappropriately unequal economy - all sorts. There is a huge amount of flexibility.
So if the vast majority of people can be held together in a Capitalist economy, despite never seeing the benefits that are exclusive to Capitalism, and there is all this to gain from Socialism and Communism, then just what exactly is holding us back other than falling for the misinformation, cleverly spun by those in power?
"I fear we are not getting rid of God because we still believe in grammar..." - Nietzsche