Society and Change

“It does take an exceptional mind and a still more exceptional integrity to remain untouched by the brain influences of the world’s doctrines, the accumulated evil of centuries to remain human, since the human is the rational… Those who cry loudest about their disillusionment, about the failure of virtue, the futility of reason, the impotence of logic are those who have achieved the full, exact, logical result of the ideas that they preached… In such a world, the best have to turn against society and have to become its deadliest enemies… What complaint do they now have to make? That the universe is irrational? Is it?”

Society is made up of the stupid, the sheep and the rational. Always in a political hierarchy it is the stupid who rule. The sheep unaware or uncaring about the rulers ignorance follow them. And so the world spirals downward in its intergrity. The rational sit on the side and watch always contemplating the better the more wise choice. And yet never does any real change occur. The poor are left to die. The powerful become corrupt. The young are left in such places where they can never learn the things that matter. And the wise stay in hiding until alas too late world events have shifted again. Humans should have by now have learned to live in harmony or at least an uneasy cease fire with one another. And still war hunger and separation keep us apart. So now i raise my one lone voice and i ask why is it like this? No doubt the popluation answers “Because it is and we cannot change it.” Change is ever happening ever constant. So why havent we changed? I should not be th eonly voice who asks this. And when change comes who will step forth and embrace it?

it is sad you look upon society with such pessimistic paradigm. while some of the most obvious leaders may be the stupid you describe, hundreds are fighting for the good change you are proclaiming. but absolute power corrupts absolutly, and no change can be made with ignorance. your change can come, but only if the dumb, and “sheep” are educated. it is not that they dont care, it is mearly they dont know. and true democracy must be enfourced.
the standard of living has increased incredably over the last hundered years. to say that we are not changing for the better is ludicrous.
however the first paragraph of your post is quite interesting

One of my few points is that why is something not done about the fact that clearly in positions of power are people who are corrupted and indoctrined into a certain way of thinking. Why are the unbias and intelligenia sought out and put in these positions? As for you quote…absolute power there should be no such thing as power it is a concept made from mans thoughst in order to exert supremacy over the rest. The authority for the world should be that of a council. Yes mankind has made great steps toward better living. Or rather a few select countries have done so. The rest of the world lives in vain. Another one of my points is that the biggest change that should have taken place has not. You have mentioned it. Why aren’t the sheep being educated. Far too many are becoming brainwashed by schools and the media and too few are learning the things that really count. As for my pessimistic views they only represent the influences of the society surrounding me :slight_smile: The few that do fight this war on ignorance i appluad and hold in the utmost respect. The keyword however is few…

I agree. But I think you are merely being impatient. I think that the reason so much ‘bad’ still happens is that we still haven’t yet become fully able as a social species to repress our inner animal selves which makes this ‘bad’ happen. And what society and its rules do is make us repress these things. It is impossible to become ‘not animal’ because that is where our fundamental instructions and instincts come from, all of which are necessary for life. We are just taught by society to repress them in the appropriate situations, although this has not been perfected yet.

Thinking one is not animal, and being able to not show it at all is the the same as being not animal. However it does introduce the emotional pain of not being able to follow our animal instincts which is where most of the misery of social humans comes from. We are trapped. But with good intentions…
That is why some rebel - because they notice this way is wrong because of all this ‘bad’. But it is still yet not at either end of of the ‘animal → social life-form path’, so it is still as of now confused.

But the more able one is to appear socially acceptable, the more desirable they become, so the more that sort of person is able to reproduce. It is not competely foolproof or quick, much like any evolution. And it is an emotional evolution. But I think it will eventually get to where its trying to get to and all this emotional pain will be so repressed that it won’t show at all.

Society is all about the change between suffering physical pain from the animal world to suffering emotional pain from the social world, yet coming out as the dominant species and becoming more controlling and safe. Which is a fair enough objective and it doesn’t need to be fought off, just recognised.

Wow! This is why i love this forum!

One part of Maximus' post intigued me...

—Truly a case where one has to kill what one loves in order to love it the more later… Sometimes protest, civil disobediance, and revolution may be the only answer. While man’s outer world has improved (longer life span, better living conditions, etc) at least in the more fortunate countries, his inner world has collapsed into a primordial swamp. (The previous posts questioning the value of public education are relevant here). The purpose of education should not be to make specialized, unquestioning, sterile worker bee drones.
—Today’s culture fills me with loathing. It seems to be a culture dictated from the bottom up (at least as far as art is concerned, witness the ludicrousness of TV reality shows).
—I too am part God, part animal, and part unwilling Hero, but i think for myself, read, and stay divorced from the boob tube.

—And although every age has complained about it’s culture, the best way to cultural reform remains…Know Thyself!

I absolutely agree with you, but I think the point is that many people act only for their benefit and why should the rich peopel want to change the way they live just to help the poor. They are egoistic in the most ways. Power corrupts, absolute power corrupts absolutely. It’s a nice saying, which I’ve heard from my friend and I have do admit that it’s true, unfortunately for us. And among the majority of passive sheep there are still people like you and me who are activists and who just don’t want to let the politicians make up decissions for us. And if such people unite, of course they will be in a minority, but it’s easier to change something, than if we just sit and keep moaning about life. For example in germany, which is totally democratic, noone was asked if we want a new currency (euro), like in other countries of EU. And this is just because the government knew that the majority will reject the new currency. After changing the old currency to the new many people were disappointed and dissatisfied, but noone has done anything about it. :unamused:

I will have to ardently disagree that society is made up of stupid people and sheep, but I will have to say that is what those in authority wish for us to be. In surveys directed at Harvard University, 80% regard the political and economic systems as frauds which serve the interests of the minority and the figures are similar in the UK. One only has to take a glance at the labour movement history to understand the inspiring struggle of ordinary people against oppresion.

I would be inclined to agree but these television programmes are not made by ordinary people but for ordinary people and coupled with the disgrace that is state schooling is attempting to destroy the minds of society.
So, I conslude that it not a matter of if change happens but when and how it happens.

Maximus, I have been doing alot of thinking about this and I have come to believe that it is “society” that creates the “mass” and that if “society” choose otherwise there would be no “mass”. Just a thought to kick around. Oh and people try to appear stupid, but underneath the veneer it is quite hard to find even one stupid human in the world.

— Rousseau said, “Man is born free, but everywhere he is in chains”. The fact that you mentioned that governments frequently make decisions counter to the will of the majority (apropos the comments on the euro, and for instance, i don’t think the majority of people over here in the USA favoured the war in Iraq, the Gore/Bush election, et cetera) interests me. If Godvernment (sic!) thinks it knows the best way over and above the will of the people even in a democracy how will we emerge from this Kafkaesque Machiavellian scenario?
---- Still, i don’t think all of the blame resides with those in power. The people are at least partially responsible. If someone makes an assinine TV show i still get to choose whether to watch the telly or no.

I would have to agree with Rousseau on that, everywhere people are in chains and not for their own protection but for the selfishness of those who put us there. James Madison wrote that the primary purpose of government is to protect the opulate minority from the majority, which I read as exploitation. I don’t think that Godvernment (sic) holds the conviction that it knows the best way but rather is enforcing minority interests at the expense of majority interests. You’re question regarding how we will emerge from this scenario carries a great deal of weight, and I don’t think that I alone could answer it but, I suggest that those who wish for real freedom and democracy could organise themselves into unions, much like the anarcho-syndicalist political system. The aforementioned system, which I sympathise with if not support, is not only valid but revelant. But really we must avoid such disgressions.

Clever idea - go tell everyone about it. :laughing:

Of course, once you rule the country/world, you will be the stupid one.

By all accounts, running the world is a difficult job. I congratulate you on spotting the flaws in current global political thought, but cannot see that anybody is prepared/capable of offering a workable alternative. Are we not destined to keep plodding on regardless?

I agree with Mcdaniel, you do have the right to turn the television off.

I also think if there was less criminals and people that do bad things, then society wouldn’t have such a totalitarian aspect. The minority that is out there to rape, steal, murder, deal drugs, abuse their spouse and do other things to hurt people, invariably make it worse for everyone. Society spends so much energy trying to protect good people from bad people that you have to go through an infinitesimal amount of red tape to actually become something, just so society is sure that you are safe.

Some drug dealers actually think what they are doing is right or that it is justice, but they are really lieing to themselves or getting fooled by the world.

Mobsters are also an interesting case, the society that they work within often looks at them as heros, as the people of South Boston looked upon Whitey Bulger the head of the Irish Mob there. But that is just a good example of organized terror and you can bet that when they put him behind bars the populace felt relieved.

Oh and anarchy will not work, because order is derived from nature.

“The unexamined life is not worth living.”

The danger with unions, etc, is that they get assimilated into the corruption (kinda like fighting the Borg on Star trek). It's like every revolution consumes itself.
And crime is a problem (both in the Higher as well as lower echelons), but the real power for change is in the hands of the elite monetocracy. excuse me for my utopian myopia, but if everyone had equal opportunities for education, etc, a lot of crime might cease.

Although it is pretty elitist of me I’d have to agree with Socrates there. Maybe
an inversion would be more appropriate? “The examined life is worth living”?

This does contain a valid point but corruption is not to hard to fight, it’s only when an elite become corrupt that it’s hard to fight.

I’ll disagree. The power for change is in a grassroots movement. These are the people that really want change and not the superficial appearances of change (par example the third way).

Couldn’t agree more. Maybe those in power need to realise that we should be more concerned with fixing causes, and not punishing effects.

— Fixing causes, not punishing effects. I like that. I would like to apply that to the notion of crime for instance, but now it would take a few generations to implement.
— What we are fighting here is the fact that people who get power and money act to keep money and power, and that is how stagnation develops. Life thrives on diversity. If the necessary blood in my body were to coagulate at a few points, like pecuniary resources do in a majority of the World’s economies, i would quickly die. We live in a World where a lot of people lack the basic necessities of life: food, shelter, clothing, birth-control, education, wages.

have you ever seen “Bowling For Columbine”??? It’s a really nice documental film, which was made in an ironic way to show us what it’s really about! I can only recommend to watch it for those who haven’t seen it yet!

Mr. Mcdaniel, I would like to say that I really enjoy your points and think that on the whole you are really on the money. I have a few comments for you. First of all by monetocracy I would assume you mean the rich and elite. Secondly, I am not so certain that crime with be reduced by equality of education, if even for the fact that not everybody wants to be educated and the simple fact is that most criminals are looking for the easy way out and getting a real education is a hard thing to get and it takes alot of work. Many criminals don’t want to learn and who could force them? Also, whether its true or false, your argument is based on the idea that education=success. Actaully I might argue that is not necessarily the case, many relatively uneducated people succeed, like some people I know that own car dealerships. I guess it really depends upon what your definition of success is.

— Thank you theoryofexist. You correctly defined my neologism monetocracy. I would be willing to bet that most punished crimes are committed by people of below average education. I don’t think the level of education in a typical prison is high, but i could be wrong. I don’t know. It would be interesting to look at studies on this. This could still be true, however, and my original thesis incorrect, as maybe the ones with above average education are as a result better at evading detection. I probably personally overvalue education as i have had little formal education. I read profusely, however. I don’t think people should be taught what to learn but how to learn. In today’s world education may not equal success, but i’m fairly certain that it will help you attain more money. :astonished:

—I think i saw that Bowling for columbine movie advertised in Free Inquiry, or the Humanist or somewhere, what’s it about.

Well I think you have a good attitude and I do agree that reading books and thinking on your own is perhaps the best way to learn, once of course you have a solid base to stand on and providing you share the products of your thought with others, like we are doing right now on this forum.

— This forum is like a marketplace of ideas. It’s wonderful here. Are you from the UK too theoryof exist? I’m from the USA.