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Letters by a modern St. Ferdinand III about cults

Gab@StFerdinandIII - Plenty of cults exist - every cult has its 'religious dogma', its idols, its 'prophets', its 'science', its 'proof' and its intolerant liturgy of demands.  Cults everywhere:  Islam, the State, the cult of Gay and Queer, Marxism, Darwin and Evolution, 'Science', Globaloneywarming, Changing Climate, Abortion....a nice variety for the human-hater, amoral, anti-rationalist to choose from.  It is so much fun mocking them isn't it ?

Tempus Fugit Memento Mori - Time Flies Remember Death 

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Wednesday, July 25, 2012

F. A. Hayek, 'The Fatal Conceit; The Revolt of Instinct and Reason' Chapter 4

From Rousseau to Keynes.

by StFerdIII

 

Socialist thought is largely dressed up in various forms of 'intellectual' fashion, the most prevalent being that of rationalist, or constructivist theology. Rationalist ideology is of course irrational, and is based upon a rejection of culture, tradition, mores and complex market orders; and instead institutes 'rational' human development through the management of all processes by 'enlightened' elites [Plato's wise men?]. Civilization, a nexus of complexity which as Hayek proves, arose out of culture, values, traditions and practices of heritage, is not a linear rationalist-created development, but a complicated creation premise on evolutionary forces in the social, cultural, political, and economic sense of that world.

 

The modern world today, as exemplified by the Euro zone [Zeuro zone]; but not confined to it; is heading for financial insolvency. The great socialist-welfare state, which went bankrupt in National Socialist Germany [by 1938]; and in National Socialist Russia [1979]; and in China [before the reforms of Deng Xiaoping circa 1980]; is again headed for insolvency ushered in by elites and their irrational view of the world deemed to be 'progressive', 'positivist' or constuctivist. In actual fact modern socialism, as with its earlier modern ancestors, is unprogressive, negative and deconstructivist. The tweed-jacket wearing, gay Keynes, so emblematic of mystical irrational economic 'thought' [or fantasy]; and whose rather moronic ideas have lead to generations embracing 'demand side management'; fiat currency, easy money and low interest rates; clearly represents the disconnect of the 'rationalist' school of Socialism with reality:

 

...Keynes, one of the most representative intellectual leaders of a generation emancipated from traditional morals. Keynes believed that, by taking account of foreseeable effects, he could build a better world than by submitting to traditional abstract rules....The slogan that 'in the long run we are all dead' is also a characteristic manifestation of an unwillingness to recognise that morals are concerned with effects in the long run – effects beyond our possible perception – and of a tendency to spurn the learnt discipline of the long view.”

 

Keynes' puerile view that in the long run we all die and we should perforce enjoy ourselves in the short term, is typical of the socialist-utilitarian. Plunder the future for the present. Reject hard work, truths and traditions for an increase in current marginal-utility and personal satisfaction. Why bother with hard money, a gold standard, limited government and spend, or with interest rates which reflect reality ? Let the future sort out those details.

 

As Hayek observes the annihlation of tradition goes back to Descartes and runs through Rousseau, JS Mill and into the modern era of our own 'intellectuals', a derisive term now applied to irrationalists and those opposed to reality:

 

Descending in the modern period from Rene Descartes, this form of rationalism not only discards tradition, but claims that pure reason can directly serve our desires without any such intermediary, and can build a new world, a new morality, a new law, even a new and purified language, from itself alone. Although the theory is plainly false (see also Popper, 1934/1959, and 1945/66), it still dominates the thinking of most scientists, and also of most literati, artists, and intellectuals.”

 

Civilization was not developed by pure reason, this theme is the crux of Hayek's book and it is undoutedly correct. If one looks at 'security' for example, it is clear that security concerns drove the creation of political entities. This is evident from the earliest urban developments in Sumer circa 3500 BC or in the neolithic villages of Jericho or Catal Huyk. Security, and the peace it affords, allows people to engage in production, trade, and labour specialisation. It is hard to be a good baker if you are worried about keeping your head from one day to the next. This fact makes little impression on the irrational socialist, who engages in cant about 'liberty' and 'justice', traceable back to that profound stooge Rousseau:

 

The second related development which challenged the extended order arose from the work and influence of Jean-Jacques Rousseau. This peculiar thinker – although often described as irrationalist or romantic – also latched on to and deeply depended on Cartesian thought.....led people to forget that freedom as a political institution had arisen not by human beings 'striving for freedom' in the sense of release from restraints, but by their striving for the protection of a known secure individual domain.”

 

Pure reason in Descartes' or Rousseau's fantasy-world, can 'set us free' to return to our 'roots' as unfettered humans, unrestrained by the traditions of social mores and culture. In this view society with its rigidities is an immoral construct, since in terms of relativity, what is 'right' for me, might not be 'right' for you:

 

Rousseau invented the fictitious will of the people, or 'general will'....this is perhaps the chief source of the fatal conceit of modern intellectual rationalism that promises to lead us back to a paradise wherein our natural instincts rather than learnt restraints upon them will enable us to 'subdue the world'...”

 

Hayek's learned restraints centered around what works and what does not work; and based on several property, culture, right and wrong and moral heritage; is rejected by the rationalists as irrelevant. In their view 'it does it matter how we got here; what matters is how we use our reason to build a perfect future'. The cult of reason, easily morphs into a cult of science, in which activists, 'thinkers' [a loose term]; or anyone who identifies himself as a rationalist, is deemed to be the embodiment of objective rationality and dispassionate observance. This assumption is remarkably asinine.

 

Long before August Comte introduced the term 'positivism' for the view that represented a 'demonstrated ethics' (demonstrated by reason, that is) as the only possible alternative to a supernaturally 'revealed ethics' (1854:1, 356), Jeremy Bentham had developed the most consistent foundations of what we now call legal and moral positivism: that is, the constructivistic interpretation of systems of law and morals according to which their validity and meaning are supposed to depend wholly on the will and intention of their designers.”

 

Comte and Bentham [and Rawls and many others as well]; overturned the evolution of civilization and declared that ethics, morality and culture were all relative and subjected to reason and reason alone [within the context of the culture in question]. Systems and social developments were thus open to be engineered, improved, changed, and moved around at whim, by application of 'reason', or at the least, the application of what the elites would deem to be 'reason', even if [as with Keynes for example]; the implementation of their ideas was illogical and banal.

 

'Rationalism' leads to all sorts of bad ideas and outcomes. Constitutions should be changed because the rational mind believes them to be 'living things'. Human 'rights' are expanded through tortured metaphysics to include on-demand abortion for inconvenienced females, whilst rejecting the rights of fetuses [who can't vote]. Moral and cultural relativity plays out in the courts and legal systems, not to mention within education and popular culture, leading to the dumbing-down of society and low standards. Economics becomes little more than demand manipulation and debt accumulation. The individual under a constructivist regime, simply fades into irrelevance as Plato's guardians, succoured by their Descartes, Rousseau, Mill and Comte; determine the processes of 'progression' and how they will unfold and mutate into a better, 'freer' and more 'rights' conscious world. This is not progression but a form of mental madness.

 

==

Introduction

Chapter One

Chapter Two

Chapter Three

 

 


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