Politics simplified

Fundamentally, political conflict can be reduced to two opposing world views.

There are those who believe that given the opportunity, all men will prove to be inherently social and thus understand that in order to live well, those around them need to live well as well and act accordingly. We can call these people “socialists”.

Then there are those who believe that given the opportunity, all men will prove to be inherently selfish and thus understand that everybody else are equally selfish and act accordingly. We can call these people “conservatives”.

The conservatives argue that they have history to back them up. Since almost all political structures known to man have been built to both contain and promote human selfishness, they claim this as evidence that humankind is fundamentally selfish.

The socialists argue that since conservatives have always been in power, it is only evident that conservative rulers perpetuate a conservative world view in their political structures. They claim that if people were to break free of the conservative political structures, they would find that they didn’t need them in the first place.

The conservatives argue that that was the communists of the 20th century tried to do, and they failed miserably.

The socialists reply that 20th century communism never originated in a quest for all people to live well together but that it was just an ideologically obtuse version of the same conservative system of selfishness.

The conservatives claim that that just proves their point.

The socialists furiously disagree and claim that we need to believe in the best qualities of man to remain human.

The fact of the matter is that maybe 80 percent of all the people in the world don’t care much for ideology and just want to get on with their lives, caring for themselves and those around them, only jumping into action when that sphere is threatened in some way.

Another 10 percent drop out of the bottom of society, flutter around or find themselves unpolitical for any number of reasons. It is not that they don’t care, they just have a hard time even caring for themselves.

This leaves the remaining 10 percent who are zealously political. They have all of these wonderful ideas on how to make the world so much better. And to do so, they want to shape and decide how the other 90 percent lives. Unfortunately, 5 percent of them are conservatives and the other 5 percent of them are socialists.

So, at best, all we get is blatant compromise. At worst, we get repression and denial.

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  1. Pingback: Og så alligevel… » The difference between right and left » the weblog of Andreas Lloyd

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