Define & Destroy

Not quite philosophy discussions, debates, various thought experiments and other topics of interest.

Define & Destroy

Postby Gloominary on August 13th, 2017, 11:06 pm 

I think the USA itself could be said to have an ideology, and gradually, perhaps inevitably, it's becoming the ideology of the world, for better, but mostly for worse.
There's few individuals, nations and countries that aren't fully or partly on board.

Is it humanism, science and technology?
Politically is it representative, liberal democracy?
Economically is it capitalism?
Socially is it progressivism, or multiculturalism and feminism?
It's probably all of the above.
Perhaps more than anything thou, it's consumerism, the notion society is improving if people are taking more from the earth, turning more of it into things people think they need and/or like, and giving it to them at whatever price they'll pay.

Now there're many casualties and consequences of this ideology, to the environment and to ourselves, and society is slowly awakening to them, but it's probably too little too late.
endless growth is not an option for the USA and its cronies, it's compulsory.
There may be a few bumps, and if absolutely necessary, we might have to occasionally slow down a little on our road to a consumer's paradise, where everything we could ever possibly imagine or wish for is a mere click, or thought away, but only temporarily, until we can find a way to resume or increase the pace of change without annihilating ourselves and everything on ball earth in the process, but we should never, ever have to come to a halt, or, dare I even say, reverse course in any way, perish the thought.

I believe that you could do away with everything, democracy, capitalism, freedom of speech, perhaps even feminism and it'd still be the USA so long as there's Coca Cola, McDick's, Walgreens and the Gap, so long as there's haves and have nots, so long as people, or at least some people have loads more than they need, know what do with or use, and the promise of everlasting shit to come if we all just work hard enough, or at least work hard enough at cheating or better yet rigging the system.
We may have to sell some of our rights and freedoms along the way to get there, we may even have to sell our souls to Satan, it doesn't matter, by God, Satan or Mohammed we'll get there.
It's what we consume now that defines us, makes us Americans, or Amerophiles: coke or pepsi, Chrysler, GM, Ford, Bentley or BMW?

But of course, it won't last, every civilization that has ever existed has come to an end, and the bigger they are...and never have we been more big for our britches, figuratively and literally.
While I think civilization, at the very least as we know it is doomed, perhaps some individuals and small groups can survive, and do their part, however futile, in changing course, if not for civilization/culture as a whole, than at least for themselves and their friends.

I am an anti-consumerist needless to say, not only should growth slow down and stop, but it should recede decades or even centuries in many regards.
We need to localize, not globalize, and work on being greener, not just, or even primarily for the sake of the environment and unborn generations, but for our own health and well being.
Rampant, reckless, unbridled and unchecked consumption is making us all a hell of a lot sicker.
I think asceticism is the answer, and minimalism-moderation, reducing what we produce/consume down to what is essential, and little else, being more appreciative and content with less.
If you're already off the grid, that's great, I'm still fully connected, but I may not be someday.

Anyway we live in interesting times, and with resource shortages and wars looming, times are sure to get a whole lot more interesting before the end of the century, but where there is disaster there is usually also opportunity, at least for some with the resourcefulness to look for and seize it.
I really don't believe life as we know it will survive this century, I mean after two world wars and the cold war, we should be counting our lucky stars we're here at all, right now.
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Re: Define & Destroy

Postby mitchellmckain on August 15th, 2017, 3:06 pm 

Gloominary » August 13th, 2017, 10:06 pm wrote:I think the USA itself could be said to have an ideology, and gradually, perhaps inevitably, it's becoming the ideology of the world, for better, but mostly for worse.
There's few individuals, nations and countries that aren't fully or partly on board.

Is it humanism, science and technology?
Politically is it representative, liberal democracy?
Economically is it capitalism?
Socially is it progressivism, or multiculturalism and feminism?
It's probably all of the above.
Perhaps more than anything thou, it's consumerism, the notion society is improving if people are taking more from the earth, turning more of it into things people think they need and/or like, and giving it to them at whatever price they'll pay.

It certainly isn't humanism considering the predominant influence of religion in America. Science is a tool only, and technology is simply the new stage of evolution which human beings are experiencing.

Representative liberal democracy can indeed be considered part of the ideology of our era of pan-Americanism. Its flaws are numerous and the claim it is better than the alternatives has the typical blindness of cultural imperialism.

Capitalism however is more a simple and natural growth of economy which has been demonstrated to be more effective at releasing the creative potential of human beings than the designed economies of socialism. However, even in America we have learned that this requires careful observation and regulation to be most effective and avoid disasters.

The cultural choices of the free society promoting religious liberty, tolerance and secular government is probably the only workable alternative in a world culture. The alternatives can only work in walled isolated communities which I certainly have no desire whatsoever to be a part of.


Gloominary » August 13th, 2017, 10:06 pm wrote:Now there're many casualties and consequences of this ideology, to the environment and to ourselves, and society is slowly awakening to them, but it's probably too little too late.
endless growth is not an option for the USA and its cronies, it's compulsory.

Yes. Endless growth is the lifestyle of various plagues, whether they be insect swarms, lemmings, viral epidemics, marauding barbarian hordes, cancer, or expanding military empires. Sanity and survival require such evils to be eradicated.

Gloominary » August 13th, 2017, 10:06 pm wrote:There may be a few bumps, and if absolutely necessary, we might have to occasionally slow down a little on our road to a consumer's paradise, where everything we could ever possibly imagine or wish for is a mere click, or thought away, but only temporarily, until we can find a way to resume or increase the pace of change without annihilating ourselves and everything on ball earth in the process, but we should never, ever have to come to a halt, or, dare I even say, reverse course in any way, perish the thought.

I believe that you could do away with everything, democracy, capitalism, freedom of speech, perhaps even feminism and it'd still be the USA so long as there's Coca Cola, McDick's, Walgreens and the Gap, so long as there's haves and have nots, so long as people, or at least some people have loads more than they need, know what do with or use, and the promise of everlasting shit to come if we all just work hard enough, or at least work hard enough at cheating or better yet rigging the system.
We may have to sell some of our rights and freedoms along the way to get there, we may even have to sell our souls to Satan, it doesn't matter, by God, Satan or Mohammed we'll get there.
It's what we consume now that defines us, makes us Americans, or Amerophiles: coke or pepsi, Chrysler, GM, Ford, Bentley or BMW?

Such is the flaw in a system catering to human greed as its driving motivation.

Gloominary » August 13th, 2017, 10:06 pm wrote:But of course, it won't last, every civilization that has ever existed has come to an end, and the bigger they are...and never have we been more big for our britches, figuratively and literally.
While I think civilization, at the very least as we know it is doomed, perhaps some individuals and small groups can survive, and do their part, however futile, in changing course, if not for civilization/culture as a whole, than at least for themselves and their friends.

I am an anti-consumerist needless to say, not only should growth slow down and stop, but it should recede decades or even centuries in many regards.
We need to localize, not globalize, and work on being greener, not just, or even primarily for the sake of the environment and unborn generations, but for our own health and well being.
Rampant, reckless, unbridled and unchecked consumption is making us all a hell of a lot sicker.
I think asceticism is the answer, and minimalism-moderation, reducing what we produce/consume down to what is essential, and little else, being more appreciative and content with less.
If you're already off the grid, that's great, I'm still fully connected, but I may not be someday.

Anyway we live in interesting times, and with resource shortages and wars looming, times are sure to get a whole lot more interesting before the end of the century, but where there is disaster there is usually also opportunity, at least for some with the resourcefulness to look for and seize it.
I really don't believe life as we know it will survive this century, I mean after two world wars and the cold war, we should be counting our lucky stars we're here at all, right now.

Agreed.
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Re: Define & Destroy

Postby mitchellmckain on August 15th, 2017, 9:10 pm 

mitchellmckain » August 15th, 2017, 2:06 pm wrote:Representative liberal democracy can indeed be considered part of the ideology of our era of pan-Americanism. Its flaws are numerous and the claim it is better than the alternatives has the typical blindness of cultural imperialism.


Also....

It is typical of pan-cultural imperialism that those less used to doing things this way are more easily manipulated and taken advantage of as kind of second class membership.
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Re: Define & Destroy

Postby Gloominary on August 17th, 2017, 3:03 pm 

@Mitch

It certainly isn't humanism considering the predominant influence of religion in America.

A substantial minority of Americans these days are irreligious, something like 25% from my research, I'm sure many-most of the rest don't take religion very seriously, they attend weddings and funerals, and have some vague belief in a deity and an afterlife.
Furthermore Protestant Christianity, particularly Calvinism, which is what the US was founded on, along with secular, enlightenment values, is in my estimation a secular and materialization of Christianity, as it made material, productive work one of, if not the purest expression of the Christian faith.

http://www.pewforum.org/files/2012/10/NonesOnTheRise-full.pdf

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Protestant_work_ethic#cite_ref-1


In the media, all day long what do we hear?
We hear make loads of money, buy and sell, go on trips, buy a nice home, a car and so on, you can do anything you want to do, be anything you want to be.
This is what Americans are listening to 24/7, not the gospel, it's the furthest thing from most of their minds.
America's faith is materialism and humanism.

Science is a tool only, and technology is simply the new stage of evolution which human beings are experiencing.

Science isn't just a tool it's an epistemic ideology, it's scientism, it's the idea that what hasn't or can't be demonstrated in a lab by people who've studied at mainline, conventional universities often funded by government and big corporations, who have a reductionist, mechanistic way of looking at things, is at best completely unfounded and at worst nonsense or 'woo'.
It's the idea that these institutions and their mechanisms, some of which were deliberately, methodically implemented, and others which organically evolved over the course of decades-centuries, their ways of thinking about the world are the only valid ones, the only way we can advance knowledge.
It's the idea that knowledge at all should be advanced, at the pace or in the ways it's being, when we could just remain ignorant about such things, or advance other, more holistic forms of knowledge, or even less holistic, thousands of times more reductionist than even science can presently muster.

Capitalism however is more a simple and natural growth of economy which has been demonstrated to be more effective at releasing the creative potential of human beings than the designed economies of socialism. However, even in America we have learned that this requires careful observation and regulation to be most effective and avoid disasters.

Creativity is not necessarily a value, a good, rarely can you create anything without destroying something else, often the costs outwiegh the benefits.

Socialism isn't the only sort of designed economy, unless you define any design whatsoever as socialism, nor is a designed economy the only alternative to capitalism.
For example, you can have elitist design, you can design an economy not to be more egalitarian, but to make the rich even richer, and the powerful more powerful, which in many respects is what happens today anyway.
Or you can base your redistribution of money on racial, religious, or sexual criteria, or on intelligence, or merit.
But really the possibilities of how you could design an economy are virtually limitless, I don't think it has to be, nor is nearly as simple as capitalism/socialism, it's a false dichotomy.

Capitalism itself is a designed economy, there are lots of rules, rulers, about what constitutes fraud, contracts, property rights, where private and public begin and end, why public and private should exist at all.
The rules are very arbitrary.
Intellectual property, who says, why?
This place still belongs to you, even thou you haven't been there in decades and it's full of rot...why?
Just cause you pay a little tax every now and then, or at one time?
It's not necessarily design to say, after a certain amount of time, this thing you haven't used in decades on the other side of the country from you is no longer yours, saying it's still yours, no matter how much time has passed, is arguably more a form of design, than just letting newcomers inhabit what you previously purchased built or discovered, which's exactly what would happen naturally, without a big centralized government keeping track of everything.

Government will tell you this land is yours if you pay for it, even if you're not doing anything with it, but should they?
How much power, if any, should they have to decide and enforce such things?
It's not even as simple as capitalism or anarchism, there's degrees in between capitalism and anarchism, and things to consider regarding the economy outside these two ideologies.

The cultural choices of the free society promoting religious liberty, tolerance and secular government is probably the only workable alternative in a world culture. The alternatives can only work in walled isolated communities which I certainly have no desire whatsoever to be a part of.

There are benefits to this system and there are detriments, according to mainline science if you hold it in regard, it's probably not sustainable, thousands of species have perished as a result of it and many more will continue to do so, so as good as things are in some ways, I think we have to dramatically work on changing course, not to mention how sickly we're all getting physically and mentally.
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Re: Define & Destroy

Postby mitchellmckain on August 17th, 2017, 5:55 pm 

Ahh I see, you are just lumping everything together in a typical Nazi like reactionary radicalism. Not interested.
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