A list of three significant flaws at both fringes. Just another entry in the ongoing theme of this blog.*
Foolishness on the political LEFT:
Soft on crime is no stereotype and Democrats keep proving it, as we’ve seen in the 2020/2021 riots. Law enforcement is essential but it’s always messy business, especially when criminals fight back. Those thugs come in different colors and oppress or kill their good neighbors on a daily basis. Slogan-based, quasi-moral gangs like Antifa and Black Lives Matter never riot over those casualties. Using a related professional metaphor, they’d rather attack firemen than sources of ignition.
Socialism in its purest forms can’t work because human nature won’t allow it to. People operate on greed, self-interest and lies as a survival strategy. Power structures will always re-form over time if you destroy them, so why waste energy and resources to return to the same realization? “Those who don’t learn from history are doomed to repeat it” is another way of stating the obvious. College students, fresh on history from the classroom, often understand it less than alumni who’ve forgotten minutia. Elected leaders should ideally not be under 30 because they’re naive about social processes.
Identity politics and woke historical shaming can’t force life to be fair on this unforgiving planet. All that does is irritate people trying to live their lives. Adults should understand that striving for equality of outcomes has been tried before. Future attempts will fail for the same reasons earlier ones did. Any idealistic youth who’s been on a disappointing date or lost a football game should know you can’t always be welcome or successful. It would take a species without human traits to manage full equity among races, classes and genders.
Foolishness on the political RIGHT:
Global warming is a “hoax” is the default Republican attitude on environmental topics, even if not put that bluntly. They keep assuming CO2 molecules must respect their narrow definitions of freedom and patriotism. They had the same canned skepticism about acid rain, the ozone hole and other forms of man-made pollution, all because avarice and industrial hegemony was questioned. They tend to see nature as beneath them, the height of arrogance, tying into religion (below). Being willfully ignorant of evidence essentially makes people stupid. The Right often operates with reason but builds logic walls around specific topics.
Gun worship is generally a juvenile phase but some people never outgrow it. They get bored with just looking at guns, so they take up crass hobbies like “sport” hunting and rationalize owning far more firepower than needed, which inevitably gets into the hands of criminals. Sometimes, they become those criminals, freaking out and shooting up public places after years of drooling over weaponry. They miss the hypocrisy of gun-fetishism when they complain about crime, gangs crossing the border with stolen firearms, and so on. You can tell they’d rather keep the world violent just to have an enemy to shoot at.
Founded on supernatural beliefs, churches have formed societal structures and inspired morality, but they’re also a venue for ignorance, dwelling on an ancient book that needs major revisions. Many new things have been learned over the centuries in medicine and science, improving life, along with some trade-offs. But knowledge gets selectively interpreted by people of faith who wall themselves off from evidence. As the world gets more crowded and interdependent there’s less room for rigid, dogmatic beliefs. The most dangerous faith-based views involve resource-scarcity denial, like “God will decide when oil peaks” rather than geology.
Humans are too innately tribal to solve chronic social and environmental problems. Many of them enjoy having enemies more than cooperating with each other and nature. Members of each tribe claim that “only those people” have flawed logic. This could be seen as a lack of education or critical thinking deficiencies, but schooling hasn’t worked. Some of the worst offenders are well educated and presume they can’t have biases.
The publicity-shy Center must speak up to prevent the fringes from controlling narratives. Still, not all the best ideas come from the Center; they’re often too bland or stoic. A wise society would choose the smartest concepts from each side and vote on them. It’s doubtful this will happen until an intractable resource-crisis forces it (see other posts on this blog).
This page may be updated and reworded at random with new information. If you cite it, please post the link instead of a pasted snapshot. *I’m not sure how others stay motivated to write when nihilism seems inevitable!