A little philosophy tonight. And I warn all readers before we start, any self-important destructive comment will be automatically trashed. As I often say, let’s have contributions from those who have something to contribute, not from those who know everything and contribute nothing – except clues as to the dimension of their ego. I don’t mind those who disagree: I just grow increasingly tired of the disagreeable.
Here’s a thesis to think about….
In the beginning of Homo sapiens was Bigbrain the pack-animal.
He/she related to a limited pack size, and took for granted the idea that hierarchies and Alphas were the way of existence.
But then the Human being learned language, developed skills and began to flex one of the new muscles in the brain: that of introspection….leading to ideas about everything from art and religion to laws and society. And being a quick learner, post-Erectus man/woman developed skills, methods, efficiencies – but particularly, two key facts about diet: hunted protein and planted crops gave the best balance.
While this led to a longer life with more time to think, the desire to have a trail of information came with our awareness of death’s inevitability. At first, the elders of the tribe/pack were used to transmit that information through the power of speech. Then came writing, plus tablets, papyrus and other methods of information preservation. The tribe grew into regions and then cities with a commonality of recorded culture.
Half a millennium ago, Caxton’s printing press changed everything: our species had the ability to not only record, but also to broadcast learnings on a mass basis. So the city/town/village culture was able to meld and become the Nation State. In Europe at least, the development of such States flowered as never before: gradually during the 1500-1900 period, Spain, Great Britain, Italy, the Netherlands, Germany, France, Russia and the United States developed, by having the capacity of remote media, into nationalities.
The conclusion in this, today’s era of global satellite communication, is that a United Planet of supranationality is on the cards. But nothing could be further from the Truth. This is a misinterpretation leaving out one factor.
That factor is this: broad, think-for-yourself education leads to doubt.
This doubt eradicated, in tandem, the religious madness of the 14th-17th century periods: and with that came the rejection of Sovereign monarchs with some kind of Divine Right.
Once the blind loyalty to a Man-God had been removed, the unquestioning admiration and obedience went with it. Hitler and Stalin tried to replace it with the leader-cult, but failed for the same reason kingship had: it was based on nothing beyond the increasingly obvious megalomania of the leader.
Once King & Country had gone, there came the rise and rise of the post Second World War generation unwilling to die for bigoted ideology. And inevitably, it followed that idealistic notions such as The American Dream, the USSR’s socialist Utopia, and the European Union’s infinite pax bruxellesica must also come under critical scrutiny.
Guilt must be proved beyond a scintilla of doubt. But one iota of doubt can find an entire project guilty.
The healthy doubt of the broadly educated mind – a mind that demands the earning of respect rather than undiscerning admiration – cannot possibly lead to the development of the supra-national tribe. On the contrary, it can only lead to the sort of at first healthy but then destructive cynicism now felt towards all those apparatchiks whose privilege and continuance depend upon an unquestioning obedience that died long ago.
This is why we find fanatics like Michael Gove determined to crush individualist thought. Why we see Spain censoring all contrary opinion. Why the EU wants to erase all evidence of past misdemeanours. And why the Conservative Party is busy removing all its previous pottiness from the various websites it controls.
There is only one basic social unit and aspiration which makes sense to the sane: a community wherein the greatest enlightenment can be available to the greatest number. I’m not talking here about some sort of unhealthy rationalism, but rather one where the developed human brain has the capacity to ensure that databased reality triumphs over unsubstantiated belief – and the human pack instinct to care for other members triumphs over the Mr Hyde in all of us.
Globalist supranationalism not the conclusion of our destiny: indeed, we are witnessing doubts about the unit that preceded it. This is entirely natural: for more open and educated minds can see no reason to worship false gods.
On the contrary, they would much rather confirm the mutuality of individuals and the community with which they feel a genuine kinship. For that relationship requires an equal respect on both sides. And from that shared regard comes the freedom that, ultimately, all human beings crave.