Expanding Carl Schmitt's "Distinctions"
life is much more complicated than we think
Something is tugging at me, and it seems to be saying that the traditional three sector understanding of human society, that I understand as political, economic, and religious, is insufficient.
Montesquieu proposed government separated into three parts: executive, legislative, and judicial.
In The Spirit of Democratic Capitalism Michael Novak understood society has composed of the political, the economic, and the moral/cultural. And he felt that they should be kept separate.
In The Totalitarian Temptation by Jean-François Revel, he uses Montesquieu’s three sectors of political power as a starting point. He adds
the economic power of the firm; union power; the power to inform; the police power…; the military power…; the imperial power, which is the power to conduct foreign policy.
And of course we have Nazi jurist Carl Schmitt with his “distinctions” from The Concept of the Political:
Let us suppose that in the field of morality the ultimate distinctions are good and evil; in the aesthetic, beautiful and ugly; in the economic, useful and harmful, or, for example, profitable and nonprofitable…
The specific political distinction to which political actions and motives can be traced is the distinction between friend and enemy.
But he also mentions the following categories: the “religious… cultural… economic… legal… scientific as opposed to political.”
OK, fine, geniuses. But here are some more:
Traditional, what is “done” and “not done.”
Associational, as in mutual-aid societies, discussion groups, athletic clubs
Technical, as in “know-how” and practiced skills
Subconscious, including emotions like sadness, fear, libido, anger, courage.
Then, I think, there are the specific characteristics of the community of women:
Observation, as in gossip and complaining about what everyone is doing
Let’s not leave men out of this:
And there is one more very important aspect of humanity, and that is “feasting.” Humans, men and women, like to get together to eat and celebrate.
Well, that’s all I can think of for now.
The point is that there is a whole world of human life outside the political and its narrow-minded collapse of human existence to friend vs. enemy.
Because there is one thing that politics leaves out, that the meaning of “life, the universe, everything,” is men and women getting together to create and bear and raise children.