Political philosophy is an academic discipline in its own right, and like any other, takes years of study and work. I have studied other things in life, and am not inclined to go into this in a big way. Some of my recent misfortunes have been due to making forays into the world of people who have very different ideas from my own liberalism (a word that needs careful definition).
I have come across a very credible idea in an article expressed by a simple digram.
Read the article and agree or disagree with it as you will.
This morning, I received an e-mail with a link to a highly interesting blog called The Archdruid Report, not the emeritus Archbishop of Canterbury but a person in America with some interesting ideas and practising Druidism. The USA is supposed to be a country of religious freedom and this man’s religion is not my concern. He writes some very interesting articles for our reflection and instruction.
In view of my recent reflections, I find this little series of articles very apposite:
- Fascism and the Future, Part One: Up From Newspeak
- Fascism and the Future, Part Two: The Totalitarian Center
- Fascism and the Future, Part Three: Weimar America
This blogger seems to base his thought on the end of the industrial age and the theory of peak oil. It does not seem to be an unreasonable idea that our present way of life can only last so long with everything that threatens it from scimitars, blunderbusses, our own carefree consumer way of life to farting cows causing global warming! Sorry to be facetious but satire seems the only way to express our concerns. There are hundreds of comments to each posting, and it will take a long time to read it all.
I have nothing much to add to these reflections, not having studied political philosophy or law at university level, which you can consider as you see fit, except the idea that political philosophy is complex and words mean different things to different people. I think of liberalism in particular. I believe that small-scale societies should agree to what extent A’s freedom has to be limited by B’s freedom and vice versa, but not crushed by an anonymous and impersonal entity like the State or some form of bureaucracy. Others would confuse liberalism with progressivism, understood as the rejection of tradition and other values (both”good” and “bad”) of the past. That seems to be often what happens.
I invite my readers to break the ice, read and think about these questions and ask themselves how they fit in with things. It’s always complex. Don’t believe anyone who claims to have a simple solution or any privilege or entitlement over and above what millions may have to suffer in one situation or another.
Tu ne quaesieris, scire nefas, quem mihi, quem tibi
finem di dederint, Leuconoe, nec Babylonios
temptaris numeros. ut melius, quidquid erit, pati.
seu pluris hiemes seu tribuit Iuppiter ultimam,
quae nunc oppositis debilitat pumicibus mare
Tyrrhenum. Sapias, vina liques et spatio brevi
spem longam reseces. dum loquimur, fugerit invida
aetas: carpe diem, quam minimum credula postero. Horace, Odes 1.11