annatar1914 wrote:The loss of God, I think. Although I cannot exclude hope from the equation that this will not remain so, this loss. And by ''loss'', I mean a culture that effectively refuses God by making itself ''gods'' individually speaking...
Today I read where at least 200,000 bikers are doing their annual rally in Strugis South Dakota. Most of these people are very Libertarian/Libertine in philosophy, almost Anarchist and very hyper-individualistic and independence minded. Now, they're doing this in the midst of a pandemic. Chances are most of them will be fine, same as the rioters and protestors, afterwards. And even most of the people they know will be fine. All along the political spectrum in America, the whole spectrum of people are not the sort to be confined, wear masks, be told what to do at all. Again, most will be fine and get through all this, along with America in general. In a year or two, it'll be as if none of this happened at all.
But what will have been actually learned from the experience? That Americans (''Left'' or ''Right'') can just do whatever the hell they want anytime they want without personal consequences?
Another note; last night I read where President Trump remarked that he'd been called a ''Socialist'' for some of his executive orders recently... Donald Trump the Capitalist down to the very core of his being, a ''Socialist''... I mean, I believe sincerely that he had that response from some circles considering some of the ''Conservatives'' (really Libertarians, almost Anarchists) in American life.
This is Barbarism.
All of this extends from the fundamental principle which we cannot criticise, absolute personal freedom and individual liberty. These are for Westerners absolutely sacrosanct. If you want to find any way to offend a Westerner you can find no surer way than to question or in any way cast doubt on his right to complete individual autonomy. There are few other ideals that seem to elicit this type of protective jealousy among Europeans and Americans today.
The principle of non-coercion and the right to complete individual liberty seem for Westerners to be more sacred than even religion.
How dare anyone tell anyone what to do or limit their freedom.
This is probably why the West was able to stop believing in religion to such an extent as it did, because the culture of hyper autonomy and ultra liberalism allowed for the development of alternatives not possible in other civilisations. It also explains why strange political cults started to develop like those of fascism, communism, wokism and the Alt-Right, because the culture of absolute freedom allowed for the formation of these ideological currents. These ideas are in themselves quite anti-liberal and so the end result is that liberalism is actually working against itself. The more society tries to dissolve and deconstruct itself the less it will be able to function in the long term.
When you have a situation where people say whatever they want and do whatever they want you will have severe problems.
And the most surreal part of this is that in spite of such extensive liberalism there is still tremendous horizontal pressure from peers. You are free from the government but not really free from the society and what it expects of you. Individually autonomous but still subject to the collective morality, which exists in all societies. Because the collective morality is so malleable and impermanent it can be influenced by all sorts of ideological currents, many of which are highly coercive if they are not in line with what you as an individual person believe.
A real fascinating question is why in spite of having the free choice people still choose materialism, cynicism and individualism. Are people merely content with a life of eating, sleeping, buying and working?
We are condemned to live.