They Think They are Noble Lords
Our liberal friends that rule over us think of themselves as wise and compassionate rulers that are carefully evaluating how to direct a complex and multifaceted modern society. In a global enviroment. You can see this attitude in the final paragraphs of Capitalism: A Short History where Jürgen Kocka from Humboldt University opines
Capitalism does not set its own goals from its own resources… It can be influenced by political means and those of civil society when and if these are strong and decisive enough.
You are wrong, Jürgi. Capitalism is an emergent system, the sum of its human components and then some.
[Every] era gets the capitalism it deserves… The reform of capitalism is a permanent task. In this, the critique of capitalism plays a central role.
Wrong again. Capitalism is eternally reinventing itself. It doesn’t need reform. It needs to be encouraged to solve its own problems, as they emerge.
You see, I think this chappie is completely missing the point. Capitalism is not some dangerous beast off on its own; capitalism is humans interacting with each other, giving and receiving economic goods and services. It is not a wild animal that needs to be tamed and trained; it is not a system of exploitation in which wise academics and activists are needed to direct it into afe channels. It is people being people. It is not something separate from “civil society,” it is civil society itself, but especially civil society as it relates to economic interactions rather than religious or cultural interactions.
Let us say that capitalism is what humans do when they stop living in a simple subsistence agriculture community that has basically no interactions with other commnities. When a community, or individuals in that community, starts exchanging goods and services with the community next door, then capitalism begins.
It is notable, as Nicholas Wade observes in Before the Dawn, that in chimp society, the males are solely devoted to defending the borders and the females are devoted to everything else, such bearing and raising the young. Primitive man, he argues, was involved in constant warfare with the neighbors. But how do you develop trust with the neighbors who are not kindred, so that warfare is unnecessary? The answer, he says, is religion.
When a chap like Kocka starts talking about politics to control capitalism, he is calling for war, because politics is always about the enemy. And that is why, in the last century of the educated class, we have seen various enemy constructs developed, where the capitalists or the employers or the racist-sexist-homophobes are the enemy. If you, the educated class, think to solve some problem with politics, then Job One is to define the Enemy.
But the whole point of capitalism is that it takes place without war, without an enemy, because once war begins then ordinary exchange is at an end. Victory is the aim, and plunder the reward of victory.
And I say that the more that politics infects a community, the more that ordinary exchange is devalued and the more that demonizing and defeating the enemy becomes the order of the day. And then, when victory is obtained by force of arms or election, the next thing is to reward the supporters.
Do you see that once you pollute capitalism and peaceful exchange and trust with politics and its eternal enemy, then capitalism is at an end, and only the fight matters?
We see that with our liberal friends over the century or so of their rule. First they were going to sensibly supervise society with their wise and knowledgable counsel. But then, with his “Moral Equivalent of War” speech in 1906, philosopher William James discussed
how to sustain political unity and civic virtue in the absence of war or a credible threat ... [and which]... sounds a rallying cry for service in the interests of the individual and the nation[.]
Hey, Bill! Suppose humans could work and cooperate together without your “rallying cry,” old chap!
Because once you get into the valley of the moral equivalent of war, you end up demonizing the people that don’t get with the program. As with Hillary Clinton demonizing half the country as “deplorables” because they don’t get on board the LGBT train. As with Joe Biden demonizing half the country as ultra-MAGAs and semi-fascists because he has a midterm election to fight.
President Carter invoked the “moral equivalent of war” early in his presidency in a speech in 1977. How did that work out Mr. President?
The fact is that politics should be locked away, like a fire-axe in a closet with a notice: “in emergency, break glass.” For anything less than an emergency, politics will Make Things Worse.