Monday, June 12, 2023

Neoliberalism is telocratic now. But it always was, depending who was talking and when.
This is all so fucking stupid. Gabor's comments go with Farrell's so I could just as well add them to the later post
Libertarians and classical liberals famously claim to be opposed to state power. So why do some of them resort to it so readily?
pic if twitter dies.

And again. The best response to all of this is in the relation of Arendt and Trudeau.
more on MacIntyre here

Updated again, and again, because I need to dot every fucking i.

"So you want to be a career soldier? Good for you. But remember that the longer you stay in uniform, the less you will really understand about the country you protect." 
A Marine colonel explains democracy to philosophers, who by the nature of their calling refuse to accept what it is.
The full quote is below.
I forget how much I repeat myself. But that's all argument is at this point.

großiga m'pfa habla horem
egiga goramen
higo bloiko russula huju
hollaka hollala
anlogo bung
blago bung blago bung
bosso fataka
ü üü ü
schampa wulla wussa olobo
hej tatta gorem
eschige zunbada
wulubu ssubudu uluwu ssubudu
kusa gauma 


These arguments have only to be stated to be recognized as being widely influential in our society. They have of course their articulate expert spokesmen: Herman Kahn and the Pope, Che Guevara and Milton Friedman are among the authors who have produced variant versions of them. But it is their appearance in newspaper editorials and high-school debates, on radio talk shows and letters to congressmen, in bars, barracks and board-rooms, it is their typicality that makes them important examples here. What salient characteristics do these debates and disagreements share?

A few pages of MacIntyre and it's like reading a very serious 22-year-old going back over his past as a very serious teenager. 

One of those books that make you go "fuck me, I need to reassess everything". Essential.

And it gets worse.

Dunno if anyone's coined this, but the condition of late modernity is "Teloslos" - purposelessness

Rakesh Bhandari replies

Tied back to neoliberalism which can be understood as a critique of the telocratic state. From Raymond Plant, The Neo-liberal State, chap 1: "To use the terminology of Oakeshott, endorsed by Hayek, the state should be seen as nomocratic and not telocratic."


More reason to despise neoliberalism


The idea that the state should just be nomocratic and not telocratic seems absurd in the face of climate change: we have a common goal of a renewable revolution, and the state has a role to play. Neoliberalism obstacle to life. 

Definitions: Nomacracy the is rule of means; telocracy is the rule of ends. 

Absolutely no sense of history. I used to think Bhandari was better.

...What’s more, the graduates were no longer content to let the machinery of business determine the course of their lives. One man told Baltzell that before the program he had been “like a straw floating with the current down the stream” and added: “The stream was the Bell Telephone Company. I don’t think I will ever be that straw again.” 

"I saw the best minds of my generation destroyed by madness, starving hysterical naked, dragging themselves through the negro streets at dawn looking for an angry fix."

If we review Bentham’s contemporaries in search of a figure who might be seen as exemplifying the antithesis of the Benthamic view of life, many names might suggest themselves and might, in one context or another, be appropriate. Rousseau, Burke, Kant himself, Hegel – each of these would have a claim, though each might prove, on closer inspection, to have something at least in common with Bentham. There is, however, a figure – a man who was born less than ten years after Bentham and died less than five years before him – who may provide the requisite antithesis. William Blake, I suggest, both embodies that antithesis and proclaims the imperfection of Bentham’s understanding of happiness. 

Keynesianism was an ideology of mobilization, an intellectual project for winning the war. And there were Keynesians everywhere. German economists, aligned with the Nazi regime, made the same discoveries at the same time. They conducted extensive debates in 1943 and 1944 as to whether there was any upper limit to the debt that might constrain the final mobilization for Hitler’s Endsieg. It was dangerous to be a fiscal conservative in Hitler’s Germany, especially as the end approached. 

MacIntyre is a Thomist
Though unfamiliar to most scientists and the general public, the term expresses a cultural problem that caught my eye. It occurs in an article written by the late Protestant moral theologian Paul Ramsey in 1976 as part of a debate with a Jesuit theologian, Richard McCormick. McCormick argued that it ought to be morally acceptable to use children for nontherapeutic research, that is, for research with no direct benefit to the children themselves and in the absence of any informed consent. Referring to claims about the “necessity” of such research, Ramsey accused McCormick of falling prey to the “research imperative”, the view that the importance of research could overcome moral values.

That was the last time I heard of the phrase for many years, but it informs important arguments about research that have surfaces with increasing force of late. It captures, for instance, the essence of what Joshua Lederberg, a Nobel laureate for his work on genetics and president emeritus of Rockefeller University once remarked to me: “The blood of those who will die if biomedical research is not pursued will be upon the hands of those who don’t do it."

"It’s War Communism in the war on disease. It’s Stalinism for the betterment of the race, and isn't that what Stalinism always was?" 

Trolley Problems and the doctrine of double effect. This time I'll quote the manuscript

The doctrine of double effect originates with Aquinas. We’re back to the authoritarianism of the Church and the research imperative. Utilitarianism doesn’t need to nit-pick about intention; it’s simple enough to say “I chose to kill 3 people to save 10”. But the focus on intention, the inner workings of the killer’s mind, denies full moral existence to those who’ve been killed, and I know of no study asking people to imagine themselves as the fat man and asking if they’re able to intuit a moral difference between being pushed by a man’s hand or by a turnstile with someone’s finger on the switch.

Utilitarianism is the logic of the military. 

So you want to be a career soldier? Good for you. But remember that the longer you stay in uniform, the less you will really understand about the country you protect. Democracy is the antithesis of the military life; it’s chaotic, dishonest, disorganized, and at the same time glorious, exhilarating and free — which you are not.

After a while, if you stay in, you’ll be tempted to say, “Look, you civilians, we’ve got a better way. We’re better organized. We’re patriotic, and we know what it is to sacrifice. Be like us.” And you’ll be dead wrong, son. If you’re a career soldier, you may defend democracy, but you won’t understand it or be part of it. What’s more, you’ll always be a stranger to your own society. That’s the sacrifice you’ll be making.

Democracy is absolutist about form and relativist about truth.

I began to find myself in a dangerous situation as an advocate. I came to believe in the truth of what I was saying. 

And “wealth” itself is an irrational concept. It is an almost mystical process, the setting of ethical values: Arising from the irrational, transforming the irrational to the rational, yet nonetheless it is the irrational that radiates from within the resulting form.

Life is pointless. If the relentless drive for growth and progress—forward motion for its own sake, a mass delusion, a telos in the void—means now that the only option is a mobilized military-Keynesianism, it's a pity. It really is. But that's why the Chinese Communist Party will save the world.

I used Ball and I should have used Schwitters, a better artist, and a comedian, mocking the imperial telocracies of Europe in 1916, and 2023.  I could have used Talking Heads, but I'll use Motörhead.

And now the liberal-woke-capitalist-powers-that-be have restricted the viewing of footage of the battles of Verdun and the Somme, to protects us. And even joking about it sounds like overkill.

16 years old when I went to the war,
To fight for a land fit for heroes,
God on my side, and a gun in my hand,
Chasing my days down to zero,
And I marched and I fought and I bled
And I died & I never did get any older,
But I knew at the time, That a year in the line,
Was a long enough life for a soldier,
We all volunteered,
And we wrote down our names,
And we added two years to our ages,
Eager for life and ahead of the game,
Ready for history's pages,
And we brawled and we fought
And we whored 'til we stood,
Ten thousand shoulder to shoulder,
A thirst for the Hun,
We were food for the gun, and that's
What you are when you're soldiers,
I heard my friend cry,
And he sank to his knees, coughing blood
As he screamed for his mother
And I fell by his side,
And that's how we died,
Clinging like kids to each other,
And I lay in the mud
And the guts and the blood,
And I wept as his body grew colder,
And I called for my mother
And she never came,
Though it wasn't my fault
And I wasn't to blame,
The day not half over
And ten thousand slain, and now
There's nobody remembers our names
And that's how it is for a soldier.

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