Monday, March 13, 2006

Lenin and Democracy for Modern Living.

Hegel, in all his abstruse beauty, concludes that there will come a time when the great thinker that makes us, (sort of like God,) will eventually come to the ultimate settlement of thought reality, and when such a thing happens, there will be no more change, perfection having arrived. It'll be the end of history, nothing more being achievable. I refer to this as eschatology fascism, and there will be more to come on this topic in some depth as we regain our focus at this blog sometime.

Francis Fukuyama took the Hegelian approach to history and applied it to economics, finding that liberal capitalism is the ultimate system beyond which there is nothing better possible. Then the world woke up to Islam as it has always been.

Ones concept of the nature of history is ideological, even if we seldom or even never give it any thought. Muslims consider history as static, an endless replay of day one since the final revelation of the Koran. Our idiot Left dhimmi fascists are hardly anybetter, thinking that there is an end to history when all will live as happy peasants in a new and man-made Eden of multi-culti equality and clouds of pot smoke.

There are the fascist monsters on the corrupted side of conflated Left/Right who argue that there is no such thing as progress in history. The list goes on.

Regular readers here will know of our affection for V.I. Lenin, one of the great political organisers in history. He, unlike so many among us today, understood that one changes history by will, even if the conditions within history are beyond the scope of agency itself. We play the game we sit at, and we win with the hands we're dealt. History is for the making.

Below is a neat twist to Lenin. It might seem unpalatable to some that we like him. Nevertheless, effective is effective, regardless of the source.

The End of His Story

By Douglas Kern

No disembodied force of History will do our work for us; the world's future is not a straight line pointed at a certain outcome, but rather a jagged and irregular line – the line between good and evil that runs through every human heart. You might think that the events of the last seventeen years would convince nearly anyone that the human heart still has the last word over History. But Fukuyama will not surrender his cherished beliefs without a fight.

He writes: "'The End of History,' in other words, presented a kind of Marxist-Hegelian argument for the existence of a long-term process of social evolution, but one that terminates in liberal democracy rather than communism. In the formulation of the scholar Ken Jowitt, the neoconservative position articulated by people like Kristol and Kagan was, by contrast, Leninist; they believed that history can be pushed along with the right application of power and will. Leninism was a tragedy in its Bolshevik version, and it has returned as farce when practiced by the United States."

So it's "Leninist" to apply power and will to achieve liberal democracy ahead of History's schedule. Presumably it was also "Leninist" to apply power and will toward making the Soviet Union fall ahead of schedule. In fairness, I believe that Communism was destined to collapse under the weight of its wickedness and economic ineptitude -- given enough time. But the resolve of the West determined how much of the world Communism could defile on its way down -- and how many people had to die in gulags while waiting for History to arrive. If it was "Leninist" to apply power and will toward expediting the rendezvous of the Evil Empire with the dustbin of History, then sign me up for Leninism.


Fukuyama offers no answer. Support democracy, he tells us, but not to the point that such support is expensive, or dangerous, or premature, or upsetting to other nations, or irritating to potential terrorists, or empowering to potential enemies, or overly "Leninist" in its zeal to loose the chains of the slave grinding at the mill. Is it any wonder, then, that Fukuyama's policy prescription is to take two nothings and call him in the morning? If History is inevitable, if no threat menaces us, and if energetic foreign action puts us on a par with Lenin, then doing nothing looks pretty good indeed.

Again, we ask: "What is to be done?"


eyesallaround said...

"...all will live as happy peasants in a new and man-made Eden of multi-culti equality and clouds of pot smoke." LOL!

Dag, you're so descriptive! I can just see a bunch of freakin' hippies in some damn stinking commune, stoned out of their gords, thinking they're in nirvana... *spit*

Anonymous said...

"Nevertheless, effective is effective, regardless of the source."

I guess I don't understand. You like Lenin because he was effective? Muhammed was effective was he not? Hitler too, effective? I am not a student of history so I don't know a lot about the communist story but I did a search on Lenin and found that he had comitted atrocities. I'm not a "regular" reader here but have read your posts at JW many times. You are one of my favorite posters there. I guess I'm disappointed to find out that you admire a communist, and a seemingly bad one at that. Are there other reasons you like Lenin beyond "political organization?"

Pastorius said...

Yeah Dag, what gives? A little leftover romance of youth?

dag said...

I thought this might rouse some comment, not so much from my introduction but from Kern's essay at Tech Central Station.

There's some real irony in Kern's essay, probably lacking in my intro.The point is to contrast the darling of (some of) the neo-cons in the Bush Whitehouse with some very bright and genuine conservatives at Tech Central.

Fukuyama is a dud, in my opinion, moreso in Kern's, in that he is arguing for non-resitence in world affairs, at odds with the Bush Doctrine from the start, but somehow now the idea prevailing in the Whitehouse and among some conservatives. To take Lenin as an example of a political figure who realised that one is not a passive spectator in political affarirs is, for a fairly hard-core conservative think-tank, a very funny position in that it's an obvious slap in the face to those who pretend to be conservatives but who are, in actuality, soft-core actors.

Now, if I still have your attention, dear reader, my point is that we cannot sit back and alow for the market place of ideas to sort out the nature of politics just because a conservative "heavy-weight" says so. It's a bad idea given credence because of his past erputation, one undeserved at that; and those at Tech Central Station have hauled him in front of the world and shown that he is wrong to advocate passivity in the face of, for example, Islamic triumphalism, and so wrong that the right approach is better found in V.I. Lenin, a worse model who is only found in Stalin or Pol Pot. Now that, dear reader is one devastating argument.

Pose that same argument to us who are concerned for the future: should we allow the marketplace of ideas to take precedent over our will? Why should we look to a civil servant in the State Dept. for answers when we can look at and find a real model in someone we truly do not want to have anythingto do with? If Lenin has better sense than our intellectual class, then where have we gone wrong? In other words, how can our intelligentsia be so stupid?

We fight for what we want and we either win or we lose in the marketplace of ideas. That doesn't mean we sit back and wait for the forces of history to do our work for us. Even Lenin, the father of modern Communism was smarter than that. If he can figure it out, what is wrong with our own,with our supposedly free market intellectual?!

Bang thy head!

Should I make any claim for Lenin on the grounds that he did his job well? Hitler might be said to do the same. Or one can use an example of a mafia don or a ballerina or any other such. I say no. I say we look to what our purpose is, that we find those who have done what we want to do, and that we do what they did, that we do it till we are better at it than they. That is such good advice for anyone in any endeavour that I will happily accept cheques or money orders for having given it to you.

Mara, one of our occasional commentators here, asks often if I have longings to ward dictaorship. I have explained numerous times that my only goal is to live my own life as a free person among the free minded if they choose to be so. To give people the choice of intelectual freedom some must be rescued by force from the evils of slavery, and from there they must be protected from harm, for example, those who would choose to be Muslim apostates must have the choice first of all, and then, if they choose apostacy, they must be ssaaved from the crazed Musolims who would murder them. My position is that generally Muslims are victims of their own cultures and the religion that destroys those cultures and the human aggregate. What is to be done? I suggest that not one sentimental gesture need be wasted on silliness if there are lives at stake. And who is the best model for action of this revolutionary kind? Lenin, like him or not.

To further muddy the waters here I'm going to claim that in military affairs, of which I am not well versed but perhaps moreso than many, I rely on Fransisco Franco. He too does what we must do, and to do what he does we must know and then we must excel. No, that does not make me a child of fascism anymore than liking Lenin's extraordinary organisng abilities make me an old communinst.

Look at what we have, what our opponents have, and what our respective goals are. How do we win?

At Tech Central they ask if we even have the common sense to know that we should fight. How are we going to win a fight we don't even think we should consider a fight worth involving ourselves in? What kind of idiocy is it to suggest, as Fukuyama does, that we should allow the nature of the historical dialectic of economy deal with the future?!

I bang my head!

We win by our own efforts. Any stupid person know this much, but our own intellectuals don't seem to know it. Who among these great conservative theorists has any sense of the marketplace at all? How many of them have ever gone to the marketplace with goods and had to compete to sell their, to fight for customers who would just as happily buy someone elses? For crying out loud, even Lenin has better sense than that. In fact, in the marketplace of ideas, Lenin blows the doors off the idiots in the inner circle of conservative critique today.

I find all this funny in a Jerry Lewis kind of way. I also bring it up to show that we must look at ourselves as dealers in a marketplace where there is no real law. We are fighting people who cut off men's heads with kitchen kinves. I intend to win in this struggle, and I eintend to do so by winning, not by letting the Great Dialectical Spirit move through the resolutions of synthese till history ends and everyone is happy. Not I!

I bang their heads!

truepeers said...

When Lenins take the stage of history their actions must be justified retrospectively, after the deed is done; if you write up a vision of your revolution in advance, you might in some partial ways anticipate and justify the Lenin, but really what you are doing is constructing an intellectual object to which attentions and desires will be attracted - and, if you are any good as a writer, transfixed - thus pulling energy away from action and thus having, against your professed ambition, a conservative effect.

Pastorius said...

The other day, I posed the question at TruePeers site, of whether advocating for the establisment of Sharia law in any Western state should be considered a treasonous act.

I think it should because I believe Sharia is a constitution for an Islamic state. Therefore, advocating for Sharia in any non-Islamic state is advocating for the overthrow of that state.

Now, of course, this would be a limitation on free speech, wouldn't it? Shouldn't any idea be able to compete in the marketplace of ideas?

Well, I think this question must be raised:

How do we balance individual freedoms with the right of the state to protect itself?

If the state can't protect its own fundamental ideas by saying, in effect, "We will not even consider ideas in opposition to these principles," then, the state will be in a constant mode of intellectual and possibly military upheavel.

I think we have the right as a state to say that we will not entertain the idea that women are 50% human in a court of law. I think we have the right as a state to say that we will not entertain the idea that apostates from a religion should be killed.

In other words, I think we have a right as a state to say that certain ideas are simply out of bounds, by virtue of their opposition to the U.S. Constitution.

Our Constitutional Republic is built on checks and balances. One check on the will of the people is the Bill of Rights. We as an electorate do not have the right to vote into law an idea which will make slaves of an entire caste of people.

I think that if, for instance, neo-Nazis were attempting to get an initiative on the ballot declaring black people to be property, that their action in advocating for such an idea is not protected by free speech, but is, instead, illegal, anti-Constitutional, and as such, it is advocating for the overthrow of the United States Constitution.

Some ideas are so wrong that they can not even be entertained.

The reason I am going into this is, I agree, Dag, that part of the establishment of order in a Democracy is drawing its boundaries. And we must be willing to defend those boundaries by force.

So, what are our boundaries?

I say, no strict Sharia.

If Muslims want to redefine Sharia, so that it becomes something which is consistent with Western values, then fine, I have nothing against the word itself. It is the idea which is anti-human and, as such, needs to be stamped out entirely.

Pastorius said...

I want to point out that a lot of people have called the elections in the Palestinian territories, Democracy.

It is Democracy only in its bare-bones form.

I don't know how it is that we, Americans, who invented the Constitution Democratic Republic, have so badly misunderstood what it is we established.

Democracy, without the checks and balances of a Constitution, and a Republican system, and courts, and a legislature, and a hierarchy of Executive powers, is merely mob rule.

Especially when its springboard is the anarchy that we see in the ME.

We must understand that if do not draw our intellectual borders as strictly as we draw our physical borders that there will be people who move into our country, outbreed us and vote in fascism.

Too many of us Americans talk like we have done it all better than Europe. We haven't. Europe is located in a part of the world where their immigrants are Islamic, while ours are Hispanic.

We simply have easier immigrants to deal with.

If we don't draw our boundaries, Islamofascism will come here too.

American Crusader said...

dag said..."should we allow the marketplace of ideas to take precedent over our will?"

Can one really exist without the other? I have always thought that the marketplace of ideas was in essence the hallmark of free will.

dag said...

American Crusader brings to light a soft spot in my argument that I'd lie to clarify here: The marketplace of ideas in objective and passive in the Hegelian sense that Fukuyama argues. His point is that no one need do anything because liberal markets and social relations will evolve into this higher state by virtue of reality.

I argue from the point of view not of a World Spirit evolving but as a man with a product to sell in a crowded marketplace that has no concern for my success or failure at all, nor anyone else's. I stand at my station with my goods and ideas, and I'm standing with millions of others who have their own goods and ideas, and if I can't sell mine better than others sell theirs, then at the end of the day I am going home penniless, regardless of the objective glories of the free market.

It's a matter of buying or selling. As a vendor in the marketplace of ideas I can sit and read a book in the hope that my product is so obviously better than those of my competitors that I will wait for buyers to pay my price. Good ideas are a dime a dozen, and if I wait for people to come buy them, I'm going to starve to death. If I hire some cheerleders and make up some advertising and give speeches on the glories of my ideas, then I have something not that people will buy but that I will sell in competition with my fellow vendors. I will take their customers because even though my products are likely no better than theirs I am willing to move and make my work sell. Market capitalism might well be brilliant, but if I sit and read abook waiting for the world to beat a path to my door, Islam will take up on the lawn as I do so.

We aren't simply faced with a marketplace of ideas where sharia is on sale against democracy: we are in a war of ideas where Islam will cut off your head if you don't have so much democracy armed to defend against Islam that you can beat them.

Reason needs the aid of legitimate force to survive in a world of madness. Passivity is death to reason.

Not all the great capitalists I can think of will be worthy models in the defence of reason and democracy. Ours now is not the time to revel in the glory of the historical inevitability of the triumph of liberal capitalism. Folks, we will all be dead or dhimmis before that great day comes round. Regardless of how good our ideas, we face a competitor who doesn't care. Islam will fight dirty. Sweet reason is at a loss.

I argue that V.I. Lenin is a better model for us than J.D.Rockefeller at this time. Unless we are armed and aggressive and organised to defend and expand our marketplace of freedom we will face those who will destroy all of the world and cast it into the darkness of Islam.

Relying on the historical inevitability of the triumph of liberal captialism is a daydream every bit as fuzzy as anything Marx wrote. Democracy and liberal capitalism needs Lenin not Mister Rodgers.

If we are Leninist in our approach to democracy, doesn't that make us no better than any other dictators?

Good grief! Look at Milton's Paradise Lost for your answer: The War Betwween Heaven and Hell. Is God evil because he cast Satan out of Heaven? There comes a time when even God gets fed up and takes action to defend the good. Even God didn't wait for the final unfolding of the historical dialectic to bring forth the permanent peace of Heaven. No, he went about his battle against Satan with all the good sense and clarity that Lenin went to war against capitalism.

If God has the sense to defend the good, we can have the same good sense. Anything fancier than that will likely see your grandchildren in burqas.

dag said...

True Peers has a point that I'm going to think about for a while. We've discussed this before and I'm still mulling it over.

dag said...

I have a lot of consideration yet to put in before I write anything further on identity. Rhosae ideas I have now might be coherent but I don't trust them to be right enough to stand for them. I have to think a lot more deeply than I have so far before I make any claims about nationality and identity.

Having written than nonsense, one shouldn't be too surprised to find me on the front lines of any number of local conflagrations on the side of one or the other. The spirit is willing but the mind is weak.

Sorry Pastorius, I don't have anything to add to your comments.

Anonymous said...

Admittedly, I am not smart or educated but I think I understand your premise. However, using Lenin to that end will not win you any converts in the marketplace of ideas.

dag said...

I don't know what a person needs to do to qualify as smart or educated. Too many claim they are both, and yet they are demonstrably neither. One would have no success in convincing them of that obvious home-truth. What matters here isn't any claims to anything about ones accomplishments or attributes but only that one present to our readers whatever honest opinion one cares to put forth.

I tend to write polemics, and in doing that I and others need others to pitch in and criticise and critique and complain and challenge. I need that input from others, and so does the world.

If we feel that we can't speak in public because we didn't go to the right schools or don't quote Milton at the best occasion for the most startling effect, then we diminish our democracies. I hope I don't give the impression that I think I have some special insight into anything and that my opinion is gifted by God. I'm here to put up talking points and to allow for others to respond as they will.

More, though, I try to organise our public meeting. I want to see people meeting face to face in the agora. The Internet is a way of us coming together so we can meet in person and take our struggle to further democracy around the world; and to do that we must meet as Human beings in the flesh so we can create what personal bonds we may. Friendship, companionship, and community membership come from seeing and speaking to each other. It is democracy.

Though I've got a picture of Lenin on the main page today I wil have Jefferson there too when the day comes to write about the public meetings he and his friends held in the colonies that became the United States of America. I don't know if you're aware that Jefferson and Mr. Smith and Mr. Jones stood in the square at the town centre and read out essays they'd composed for the sake of their fellows. It was the Internet without electricity. I want us to recapture that democracy.

Perhaps you know that my hero, Socrates, was little more than a bum. He sat in the agora in Athens and bothered people. We can do that too. We can appraoch the demos, the people, and we can talk to them. It's democracy, and it's something that I and my friends here value very much and are willing to take some great risks to preserve and expand. Eveyone has that right to speak freely, and you have it as much as anyone.

hether Lenin is the right choice of models for the revolutionary programme we need or not, I don't rightly know. I sometimes quote Kurt Vonnegut who writes, and I'll get it properly tomorrow, that he hopes the angels are organised along the lines of the mafia. Brando, Lenin, Marat, I don't care so long as we win our struggle and come out of it as people we don't hate.

And please don't write that you're not smart but that you understand my premise. It makes me think that all my erudition is for not.

Now, what exactly is your objection? The floor is yours to show us some democracy in action:

eyesallaround said...

I think anon has a good heart. Maybe using Lenin to illustrate your point wasn't such a great idea. Some of us just plain hate commies and see socialism as a slow slide into that sad state. And besides, the f**Ker looked like the devil don't you think???
The devil, or that old Hassin freak job the Israeli's killed a year or two ago...

Anonymous said...

Your erudition is not for naught. I like it. I don’t have that gift of yours, where words flow like water, nor have I read those books that gave you such knowledge. I’m sometimes in awe of the things you write. It’s just that I have to read them carefully, then reread to make sense of it, look up words, then think some more. I wish I hadn’t even said anything at this point, but the praise for Lenin from someone I respect bothered me. By the way, I said “I think I understand,” I’m still not sure if I really gathered all the layers of your thoughts as you meant them. Maybe it’s the polemic style which curves my mind. I don’t know.

I don’t have an objection to you or your words. Like you, I believe in the free exchange of ideas and you have many, and they are well said. So to get to the crux of our conversation, Lenin, I suggest this. When one promotes a monster as a model to fight other monsters, they become no better than the monsters they fight. Let us not seek the lowest common denominator for action, but the calculus of humanity. For once it is lost, all is lost. Aspire to a higher order sonofwalker. Walk in the light, don’t crawl in the darkness. Would you be proud if your ideas were linked to Lenin? I wouldn’t. I would be proud if my ideas were linked to Socrates, he only bothered people, Lenin killed and enslaved them. Does this make any sense to a polemicist? I don’t know.

In the war of ideas and the war with Islam in particular, I believe we fight on the same side. March on Brother.

eyesallaround said...

By the way Dag,,, We're glad you're on our side!!!! :>)

dag said...

One of the joys of doing this is meeting people and exchanging my old ideas for new and better ones.

My feeling, and my considered understanding, is that everyone has that right. One of the many joys in my life is to learn that I was wrong and to come away from a discussion or an experience knowing that I have come to at least a better understanding than I had before. It strikes me as a terrible crime to force people to ignorance, as Islam does. To enslave another's mind is, to me, a crime worse than murder.

One of the reasons I hate Lenin is that he was the premier example of the totalitarian slaver of the last, unmissed and unloved, century. One of the reasons I hate Islam is that it takes Lenin's place. Islam is even worse than Communism.

Our privilege as free people is our ablility to free those who we can free. I don't try to argue that we can save the world, but I do argue that we can destroy the walls that confine those who would be free if they so choose.

I become shrill at times in the defence of personal liberty, and at times I rage and come too close to calling for the public hanging of those I feel are destructive of the minds of others. I'm fortunate to have friends who come to my aid and calm me down with reason and dispassion. That is a fortune too many of our Muslim cousins do not have and cannot have. I've seen children driven to madness by those who, like Lenin, would use them for their own ends; and I will kill those people at every opportunity. Having made that point I hope to write convincingly that I am not a violent madman but a man mad who will in need be violent.

Lenin's evil drive to enslave all for the sake of his own internal hell is someone who must be stopped by whatever means necessary. There are many like him, many in HAMAS, for example, and one small example at that. We cannot rightly allow him and his kind to carry on as they will till the forces of history smooth them out and bring peace and liberty to all men free and self-determined. I can't stand by and watch. I can't rush about in a state of stupid panic and hatred either. Our struggle requires sense and discipline and considered Human decency. No, we can't fight this battle for the sake of good only to find ourselves corrupt in the victory.

We are, to fall back on a word not much in use these days, Right. To be right is to do right.

I'm going to take some time to consider the points above, to ask if I'm right or if there is a better approach to the problem than what I have so far recommended. That is an opportunity anyone deserves, and I am blessed in that it is mine.

Thank you.