Tuesday, June 14, 2016

After Orlando: Socializing Young Men to Cooperation

I want to dissent from the outrage about young men up and killing people.

Everybody thinks it is a dreadful scandal. To me it is the most natural thing in the world that young men should delight in massacre and mayhem. The challenge, and it is a big one, is to socialize them to Work.

Young men are wired for their characteristic role in hunter-gatherer societies, which societies are, scientists tell us, always at war and losing about 500 per 100,000 of the population to violent death every year. (Our violent death rate is more like 5 per 100,000 per year.) The role that young men play in hunter-gatherer society is the dawn raid on the neighboring village, to kill all the men, and take the women and children into slavery. They are socialized to Fight.

But we in the western world are two revolutions removed from that. First there was the agricultural revolution, that reduced warfare to the marcher lords and their followers on the border of the agricultural realm, while everybody else went to Work on the farm. Then there was the industrial revolution that reduced the armed forces to a professional army, augmented from time to time with a mass draft army, while everybody else went to Work in the factory.

In the western world we want our young men to be socialized to Work, not to Fight. All in all, we have done a good job of it, and young western men mostly do their duty and obey the rules, go to Work, and follow the law.

But there are couple of exceptions, and we know who they are. First of all there are the lefty activists, that have a culture of "violent resistance." Yes I know. The left usually advertises its faith in Peace and Justice, but when you get into the lefty literature -- try the Hardt and Negri Empire trilogy -- they believe in revolution. Here's Huffington Post chappie Jesse Benn flying his true colors.
Violent resistance matters. Riots can lead to major change (*note the irony of that hyperlink going to a Vox article). It’s not liberal politicians or masses that historians identify as the spark underlying the modern movement for LGBTQ equality. Nor was it a think piece from some smarmy liberal writer. It was the people who took to the streets during the Stonewall Uprising. It was the Watts Rebellion, not the Watts Battle of Ideas, that exposed the enduring systemic neglect, poverty, inequality, and racism faced by that community. Similarly, it was the LA Uprising, not the LA Protests, that led to significant changes in the Los Angeles Police Department. More recently, the Ferguson and Baltimore Uprisings both helped prompt the Justice Department to investigate their corrupt police forces.
I love that guy. Hey kids! Let's all get into the violent resistance game. Personally, I think that conservatives should form their own protest group and practice violent resistance against the cruel and corrupt and unjust liberal ruling class and their bribed apologists in the universities and mainstream media, our present cultural hegemons and political masters. Not.

Sorry lefties. You've lost the plot. Violent resistance is one thing when you are the working class in 1848 and you don't have the vote. You are outside the political system and the only way you can get the attention of the ruling class is by street action. But once the working class got the vote it stopped its street action.

It was about 1920 that the left realized that this was a problem. Who was going to get into the streets for street action and revolution if the working class had lost its revolutionary fervor?

Perfectly simple, said the Frankfurt School chappies. They deployed the Eisenhower Doctrine before Ike had even thought of it. If you have an insoluble problem, said Ike, make it bigger. So Frankfurters expanded their class politics to identity politics. Anyone that they decided was marginalized and/or oppressed could now pour into the streets and demand their rights.  Yeah! Violent Resistance, baby!

This is all tremendous fun and it annoys the bourgeoisie something fabuloso. You can put your rent-a-mob into the street and hand our protest signs from here to eternity. And you can threaten, as our liberal friends did back in the Sixties, that unless Congress did something there would be a Long Hot Summer. Right now partly-funded-by-George-Soros Black Lives Matter is playing the same game.

Then along came the Muslims.

I feel sorry for the Muslims. They are playing on a bit of a sticky wicket. Their strike-first-and-ask-questions-later culture seems to be uniquely unsuitable for the modern global capitalist world which thrives on trust-the-stranger across the whole wide world. Why, proper Muslims don't even trust their women out of doors. They marry their cousins and they don't trust anyone outside the tribe, let alone outside their religion.

And it is clear that Muslims believe in power.

Now I believe that the crucial feature of the modern world is the bourgeoisie and its culture of dignity and innovation that is not that interested in power. But it is obvious that many people really have a problem with this. Lefties. Fascists. Tin-horn dictators. Liberal experts. Liberal activists. Muslim terrorists. And these chappies have spent the last 170 years trying to drive a spike into the heart of the not that interested in power culture.

Look at the German problem, in World War I and World War II. What were the Germans thinking? They didn't need to conquer Europe with their excellent soldiers. They were already conquering it with their excellent philosophers and physicists and chemists and Otto and Diesel cycles. And air conditioning. Did you know that the Germans invented air-conditioning so they could make beer in summer?

Look at the Soviet problem. The clueless Bolsheviks thought that the road to the future was worker power supervised by right-thinking lefties that believed in worker power. Wrong! Worker power and government force turned out to be a complete disaster and reversed the trajectory of the rising Russian Empire into a dysfunctional mess.

Now we have the frustrated Muslims of the Middle East thinking that the answer to their problems is power. No it isn't Muslims, but it looks as if we are going to have to teach you that the hard way.

But there is another problem. Liberals and Democrats. They have built their political machine on the Frankfurt School, by dividing the national community into a Coalition of the Fringes of identities, helpless victims that need liberal experts and activists to represent them against the implacable horde of typical Americans. Thus women, blacks, Hispanics, gays, and Muslims all need the beneficent Oz to fight for them against the brutal bourgeois regime that has raised per capita income from $3 to $120 in 200 years. The horror!

Yes but what happens when young men start doing a spot of violent resistance in San Jose and beating up gay Hispanics Republicans? What happens when a young Muslim-Afghan-American shoots up a gay bar in Orlando?

I'd say that it might encourage some individuals in the Coalition of the Fringes to wonder which side their bread is buttered on. Maybe, just maybe, we should all think about ourselves as Americans, and not as hyphenated identity groups. Maybe, just maybe, gays and Hispanics and African Americans should think about what the Democrats have done for them lately.

Maybe, just maybe, we should return to our basic western menu, which is to socialize young men not to murder and mayhem in inner-city gangs and liberal activism and Muslim terrorism. Maybe we should socialize them back to Work.

That is after all what Hegel was suggesting with his tortured Master and Slave myth. Once you stop the kill-or-be-killed culture , the Fight of the hunter-gatherers, then you enter the world of Work. You start to learn how to dominate the world rather than other men. And you start to recognize other men as men and not as opponents in the Fight.

Yes, I've been reading Koj√®ve's Introduction to the Reading of Hegel as every good lefty used to do, and I'm going to be using his analysis rather freely in the future.

Because if you want to defeat the left you must first understand the left.

And the key to the future is to deal firmly but kindly with the foolish people that believe that the answer to life, the universe, and everything is power. As some chappie said about 2,000 years ago. Forgive them Father, for they know not what they do.

1 comment:

  1. Interesting reading, it is all overwhelming to me the perpetual change of this country. I worry about the rate of the movement to satisfy so many different groups that the core and heart of what makes this country unique and wonderful is tearing from strain. The tearing will fracture and it alarms me that when catastrophe's like Orlando happen, we all become even more so divisive. I would not say I'm a leftist democrat nor a staunch republican, but an American that wonders if I am an anomaly seeing anything red, white and blue and it gets my heart racing with pride. We are supposed to celebrate our differences and embrace in our counterparts what we are lacking. Instead, some declare and protest vehemently that theirs is the best voice to hear, because it is the loudest, and basically drive a rift so that the gifts to share among one another are to be forever lost.