Tuesday, July 31, 2007

My Political Philosophy - Part I - The Basis

1. I am best described as Classical Liberal in that I champion democracy, human rights, private ownership of property, free enterprise, meritocracy, high levels of education, the rule of law and a complete openess to discussion and debate within society.

2. I believe that Western Civilization, while not a pinnacle of all that there is (nothing is - political idealism as a potential reality is a myth), represents an advanced state of the human condition. I will make no apologies for this position as to do so often generally invokes the odious philosophy of cultural relativism.

3. I appreciate religion as a system of ethics and a source of individual strength and hope but believe that it should be divorced from the functioning of the state.

4. While Western Civilization represents an advanced state in the history of our species it is still incumbent on the civilization’s institutions to learn from the other great cultures viz. Sino-Japanese, Latin American, Slavic, Hindu etc.

5. The march toward human betterment in Western Civilization has been challenged throughout its history by various force-dynamics . Some of these movements have been products of the outside world others were creations from within. The following is a list of such force-dynamics. All are problematic, some have been overcome, but others remain as an epidemic that future generations will have to deal with:

· Feudalism – Ended by the Renaissance, the Age of Exploration, early urbanization and the birth of the modern economy;
· The Domination of the Totalitarian Church – Eventually Eclipsed by the Reformation, the Enlightenment and the Rise of Reason and Science;
· Powers of the Aristocracy – Ended by both the violent and non-violent bourgeoisie revolution, liberalism and nationalism;
· Fascism – Defeated by the Western Democracies in World War II;
· Communism – Defeated by the Economic Machine of the United States;
· Islamism – A struggle that still continues;
· Rampant Statism - The Nanny State that threatens individual freedom,
· Greed Capitalism – A dangerous but age old phenomenon that still survives.

Western History is complicated in its analysis – a reason why I reject the silver bullet 'means- of-production-model' that is defined by the failed school of Marxist- Leninism (and all its cousins Trotskyism, Stalinim, Maoism, Fabianism). The fact that this model continues to survive in earnest in academia, where it nestles alongside Post-Modernism (Radical Feminism, Primitivism, Intellectual Anarchism etc) is a tragedy that serves as a blight on modern academia.

6. Several factors I believed that have contributed to the domination of western civilization are:

A Strong Emphasis on Science and Reason

Ethic Foundations of Judeo-Christian Philosophy

Free debate

A necessary and carefully maintained balance between the right of the individual and that of the community

A methodology of self-correction

A disdain for corruption

Limited tolerance toward crime

Informed legalities

An emphasis on Personal Responsibility

A willingness to defend oneself and the gains of all

7. While many of these attributes are not unique to Western Civilization. All have been necessary ingredients to ensure the meaningful progress away from the age of superstition, unreason and savagery.

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