Wednesday, October 01, 2008

Leftism fails because it's guilt and egodrama, not practicality


You actually do us all a real disservice with your tiresome, tedious politics. For in fact, there is nothing more important than politics. NOT the politics of American "democracy" and law, of who is elected state legislator to sign the same bills and perpetuate the same system. Not the politics of the "I got involved with the radical left because I enjoy quibbling over trivial details and writing rhetorically about an unreachable utopia" anarchist. Not the politics of any leader or ideology that demands that you make sacrifices for "the cause." But the politics of our everyday lives. When you separate politics from the immediate, everyday experiences of individual men and women, it becomes completely irrelevant. Indeed, it becomes the private domain of wealthy, comfortable intellectuals, who can trouble themselves with such dreary, theoretical things. When you involve yourself in politics out of a sense of obligation, and make political action into a dull responsibility rather than an exciting game that is worthwhile for its own sake, you scare away people whose lives are already far too dull for any more tedium. When you make politics into a lifeless thing, a joyless thing, a dreadful responsibility, it becomes just another weight upon people, rather than a means to lift weight from people. And thus you ruin the idea of politics for the people to whom it should be most important. For everyone has a stake in considering their lives, in asking themselves what they want out of life and how they can get it. But you make politics look to them like a miserable, self-referential, pointless middle class/bohemian game, a game with no relevance to the real lives they are living out.

What should be political? Whether we enjoy what we do to get food and shelter. Whether we feel like our daily interactions with our friends, neighbors, and coworkers are fulfilling. Whether we have the opportunity to live each day the way we desire to. And "politics" should consist not of merely discussing these questions, but of acting directly to improve our lives in the immediate present. Acting in a way that is itself entertaining, exciting, joyous—because political action that is tedious, tiresome, and oppressive can only perpetuate tedium, fatigue, and oppression in our lives. No more time should be wasted debating over issues that will be irrelevant when we must go to work again the next day. No more predictable ritual protests that the authorities know all too well how to deal with; no more boring ritual protests which will not sound like a thrilling way to spend a Saturday afternoon to potential volunteers—clearly, those won't get us anywhere. Never again shall we "sacrifice ourselves for the cause." For we ourselves, happiness in our own lives and the lives of our fellows, must be our cause!

Your Politics are Boring


The writer of this essay has a point: leftist politics fail because they're guilt-oriented, and based in the individual's need to justify a failing ego, and so they do not aim at real solutions.

Even worse, they turn life into dogma-based obligation, like it was in the Soviet Union.

When I was a leftist, I believed that by making good arguments to others, we could save the world and make it less cruel and more fair. Later on, I saw how this made no sense. The plans of leftists would not have realized their goals, and in the process, they would have turned everyone into a dogma-bound leftist activist. I saw quickly that leftism was a cancer that would drown us.

If you want the poor to be better off, or minorities to be better off, design a better society on a practical level. That may mean, for example, that ethnic nationalism and traditional culture are needed; minorities may be better off on other continents. For the poor to be better off, you may need a caste system. The poor will be better off when they don't buy what their TVs tell them to, and so always live in debt. Thinking outside the box is anathema to leftism, because they like the same tired solutions that have failed for centuries, because they don't care if anything gets done. It's a social fashion, an identity, a passtime.

Once you start reading history, you see that all politics exist in the crossover between pragmatics and playfulness that this author describes. We call it conservatism now, but it's not a thing as much as it is a range of political solutions based in pragmatic, real-world focus. Leftism cannot comprehend it because leftism has never contemplated the real world, and that's why they bore us all with their archaic, deathbound dogma.

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Subvert the dominant paradigm, don't be a solipsist.

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