Posts Tagged ‘Francis Fukuyama’

Why Democracy Is Failing in America

June 19, 2017

Why Democracy Is Failing in America

One of the most vexing mysteries of human history remains how to create a socioculture that offers the greatest freedoms, social welfare, health, personal safety, and economic security for the greatest number of citizens…..for all time.

Psychology, Sociology, Cultural Anthropology, Criminology, Political Science, Economics, Military Science, and all the other sciences, are all (separately or together) light years from solving this great human conundrum.

It was therefore with rising hopes that I read Francis Fukuyama’s stunning 1992 book: The end of history and the Last Man. Fukuyama argued that humanity had tried all of the potential forms of government and they had all failed badly. But, generally speaking, democracy had been the most successful and was on the rise for natural reasons and therefore would come to be the predominant organization of sociaocultures.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_End_of_History_and_the_Last_Man

I read this convincing book in the mid-1990’s, but have since witnessed the steep decline of all of Western Culture and, most personally, United States of America. This decline has been strongly correlated with  the loss of the strong Judeo/Christian influences that Fukuyama judged was historically Western democracy’s superstructure.

I have now read, repeatedly, that history records democracies normally do not last much longer than 200 to 300 years.

It is thought that democracies contain the seeds of their own destruction and they grow, God Forbid, into socialism! Another form of government markedly prone to failure, often replaced by dictatorships or other forms of tyrannical governments.

This is precisely the argument that John Bowman convincingly makes in his 2016 book entitled: Democracy: And Why It Will Fail in America.

What follows are Bowman’s abstracted samples of the six reasons that Democracies fail.  

It is essential that all American’s recognize these common failings in their own socioculture and work to repair them.

  1. THE LOSS OF FREEDOM. “The largest, most powerful and richest centralized government in the world increasingly controls all aspects of citizens’ lives, and they find themselves increasingly caught in a web of devised artificial rules and regulations promulgated by legislators and faceless Washington bureaucrats. Governmental regulations have exploded over the past one hundred years, filling volumes and showing no sign of abating.” (Kindle Loc. 4533)
  2. INEQUALITY. “Like freedom, Americans are losing equality. Democracy is a political system that is trying to solve an unsolvable equation involving freedom, equality and nature. Each part of the equation opposes the others.; Freedom does not exist in nature and does not bring equality, equality does not exist in nature and often takes freedom, and nature offers neither freedom nor equality.” (Kindle Loc. 4614)
  3. INJUSTICE. “With the law detached from morality and just a social fact justified under positive jurisprudence it is only natural that the free-floating concept of social justice emerges.” (Kindle Loc. 4723) “So what is social justice? various sources describe it as public education, immigration reform, equality for homosexuals, economic justice for the poor and working families, a woman’s right to equal pay, diversity, the right to equitable treatment, human rights, equal opportunity, equality, the fair allocation of community’s resources and the right not to be discriminated against based on gender, sexuality, religion, political affiliations, age, race, belief, disability, location social class, or socioeconomic circumstances. Social justice is a potpourri of wishes and desires individuals or sects that are not equal in all respects espouse, hence its natural occurrence in late democracy. It does not bring justice to all but only those sects claiming justice. it does not account for ability, effort, industry or personal responsibility, all of which it derides as as characteristics and concepts enabling inequalities in society.” ( Kindle Loc. 4736).
  4. CONCENTRATION OF POWER. “Jefferson believed that history does not teach us but rather only warns us, and one such warning must be the concentration of governmental power, which is inimical and ultimately fatal to democracy. Tocqueville warned of concentrated power in democracy that suppresses liberty, and George Orwell, in 1984, famously described an omnipresent , controlling, manipulative and surveilling Big Brother government that punished individualism and took liberty.” (Kindle Loc. 4918)
  5. RELATIVE MORALITY. “Democracy has caused America to lose her moral compass, and one consequence is injustice, which inevitably leads to divisiveness. One only need to survey the newspapers in late American democracy to see the discord and divisiveness that have become chronic. Divisiveness is democracy’s Achilles heel, and it will be discussed next.” (Kindle Loc. 5112)
  6. DIVISIVENESS. “America has become a country permeated with divisiveness. This is not a single-issue divisiveness but rather one that represents deep philosophic differences about the nature of the world, how we ought to live, the nature of man, the constitution of justice, the function of government and what it means to be free. It is a fundamental collision over what it is to be human.” (Kindle Loc. 5122)  “This is a kind of divisive internal strife that occurred in ancient democracies like Athens, republican Rome, northern Italy and France before they failed. It is also the kind of faction that many historic thinkers have warned against. Plato, Aristotle, Tocqueville, Madison, Hobbes and Edward Gibbon are just a few who believed democracy brought chaos, instability, faction and contention.” (Kindle Loc. 5127)

Do you see these things happening in America?

If you do, you must vote against the leftist/radical-liberal/progressive forces of American democracy’s destruction?.

V. Thomas Mawhinney, Ph.D.      6/19/17

 

Tragic Consequences of Socialism

November 21, 2013

Tragic Consequences of Socialism

F. A Hayek has warned the world about the tragic consequences of nations adopting socialistic political/economic cultural designs.

What are the consequences of movement away from America’s traditional Constitutional Republic values to a progressive/socialistic philosophy and political methods and outcomes? The stunning consequences are emerging as I now write (11/11/13). The events and their details that I reference below, have been repeatedly in the current news media. If by chance, you do not recognize them, as well as their important associated details, I advise that you learn them now, before it is too late. A Representative Republic such as ours requires and informed voting citizenry or it will fail.

  • Fast and Furious
  • Benghazi
  • Massive Intelligence Leaks
  • The longest financial recovery in history
  • Expensive and ineffective economic stimulus initiatives
  • A transition from full to part-time employment for millions
  • Over 10 million out of labor force since 2009
  • Record numbers of food stamps
  • Record numbers unemployed
  • Record numbers on disability
  • Household incomes down
  • Unprecedented examples of intimidation and incursions into citizen’s privacy by the IRS
  • NSA’s (National Security Agency) “over-collection” of  domestic communications
  • Hints that the Obama Administration “fudged” employment figures just prior to his second election
  • Clear evidence that President Obama has lied repeatedly to the public about numerous important matters.
  • Clear evidence that President Obama has lied repeatedly to the public about Obamacare (The Affordable Health Care Act)
  • Obamacare with millions of insurance policy cancellations and dramatically increased, unaffordable for many, premiums.
  • Our 17 Billion dollar National Debt\Dramatic growth in the Federal Government
  • A Greatly divisive President
  • A plethora of ongoing scandals about the unscrupulous and/or feckless actions of the Obama Administration

Some might expect that these bad outcomes, predicted by critics of an increasingly socialistic American government might lead to a great political backlash for liberty against an overreaching and repressive government. Examples of such an emerging reactions are Tea Party and Libertarian group initiatives. But there is a danger that these and other political counter-attacks it will not be sufficient to turn the tide. As Hayek has explained, there are many people who will readily trade their liberty for security and if their numbers are great enough, the “consequences laid-bare” may not be enough alter America’s transition to socialism. This would seem even more likely as our current socialist-leaning government has imported and recruited millions of non-citizens and citizens (respectively) into various “entitlement” and welfare programs. As the portion of America’s population suckling at the central governments breast approaches 50%, hope of altering America’s decline through the popular vote must diminish.

Francis Fukuyama, in his 1999 book entitled: The Great Disruption, appears to be in strong agreement with Hayek and he  appears to have anticipated one of the most threatening problems for 21st century America:

While governments re capable of building social capital, they are also adept at destroying it. I noted in earlier chapters how states that fail to provide for public safety or stable property rights tend to breed citizens who distrust not only the government but also each other and find it difficult to associate. The growth of modern welfare states, the centralization of their functions, and their intrusion into virtually all walks of life have tended to undermine spontaneous sociability. In European countries like Sweden and France, there is what passes for a vigorous private associational life, but almost all of it depends in some manner on the government for subsidy or regulation; in the absence of the state, many apparently voluntary organizations would collapse. In the United States, localities and states lost power to the federal government during the period of the Great Disruption, and when the government intervened, it was often hostile to the goal of private association. The decriminalization of social disorder described earlier, carried out by the judicial system, it just one example of how the modern liberal state has been able to rob local communities of their ability to set rules and norms for themselves in the name of individual rights” (pps. 258-259).

Wake-Up America!

Stay tuned for more.

VTM, 11/21/13

The Seeds of America’s Destruction

November 16, 2013

The Seeds of America’s Destruction

As Francis Fukuyama (2006) has reminded us: “let us accept the Hegelian-Marxist thesis that past history has proceeded dialectically, or through a process of contradiction, leaving aside for the time being the question of whether the dialect has an ideal or material basis. That is, a certain form of socio-political organization arises in some part of the world, but contains its own internal contradiction which over time leads to its own undermining and replacement by a different and more successful one.

It appears to be true that each socio-political form of government including our own Constitutional Republic, carries with it its own unique seeds of destruction. From a broad historical perspective, these inherent weaknesses often combine with outside forces of attack or natural disasters to bring them down. Such “undermining and replacement” does not always directly lead to a more successful socio-political entity, however.

F. A Hayek (1944), attempted to warn the world about one kind of transformational force in socio-cultural evolution and revolution. Hayek after experiencing the effects of so-called “social democracy”, Totalitarianism and Fascism in Europe, wrote a definitive book on these matters and on free society. The title of the book was The Road To Serfdom. In his introduction to this book, Republished in 2007, Bruce Caldwell summarized its essence most succinctly: “the actual implementation of a centrally planned society would be inimical to liberty” (p.33).

 Hayek observed that socialism inevitably led to the loss of liberty for the citizens so governed. He asserted that they were seduced by their fervent desires for security to give up their individual freedoms, in various gradations, only to find to their horror that they had come close control of their inept, inefficient, and dictatorial State cultural planners.

 “That democratic socialism, the great utopia of the last few generations, is not only unachievable, but that to strive for it produces something so utterly different that few of those who now wish it would be prepared to accept the consequences, many will not believe until the connection has been laid bare in all its aspects” (p. 82).

 Some may wonder what Hayek meant when he talked about the “consequences” that must be “laid bare” before well-intentioned socialists will believe it. A stunning contemporary example is emerging in America’s current President Obama who promised his followers that he would “Transform America!”. An analysis of his personal history strongly suggests that this transformation is a perfect example of what Hayek was trying to warn everyone about.

 Indeed, President Obama’s most intimate associations, from childhood till now have been socialists, communists and revolutionaries. Frank Marshal Davis, his own Father, William Ayers and Bernadine Dohrn, and Alice Palmer are only several of the many documented. Also documented is his discipleship with Saul Alinsky methods (author of Rules for Radicals) and radical preacher Jeremiah (“God Damn America”) Wright. Do not forget his intimate association with ACORN, a socialist political action front group.

There is much more evidence that could be marshaled to document President Obama’s Marxist, Communist, Socialist, Islamic associations and influences, but what I have provided are sufficient examples for now.

 Though I must call for his impeachment, my attack is not against President Obama, the person, and it is certainly not against his ethnicity. The impeachable offence is his political occult philosophy and his predictably dishonest actions furthering the rise of a Marxist-based socialism in America against the will of the majority of citizens.

What is of the greatest immediate importance to recognize are the predictable “consequences”, “laid bare”. To fail in this is will be to fail to heed F. A. Hayek’s warnings about socialism with great and tragic consequences for all citizens of America.

Stay tuned for more of this….

VTM, 11/16/13

Religion and Fertility In America

November 11, 2013

Religion and Fertility In America

Perhaps nowhere are the indelible facts of the central theme of God in the founding of America’s Democratic Republic more clear and undeniable than in the stone edifices of the buildings and other structures of Washington D.C.. I thank my dear sister-in-law Jeanne Ollhoff for posthumously gifting me an edition of Newt Gingrich’s Rediscovering God in America: Reflections on the role of faith in our Nation’s History and Future (2006). I encourage you to read this powerful little book.

It is reasonable to wonder why in Europe religion has lost ground compared to in America. Francis Fukuyama describes this counter-intuitive outcome and provides a plausible explanations in his book, Trust: The Social Virtues and the Creation of Prosperity (1995).

“The U.S. Constitution prohibits the federal government from establishing a national religion, though it does not prohibit the states from doing so. Some individual states like Massachusetts had established religions as late as the 1830’s but the principle of the separation of church and state is an old and venerable one. One would think that the establishment of a national church, as in a number of European countries, would promote a strong sense of community, since it would bind national to religious and entity and give citizens a common culture beyond the political system. In fact, something of the opposite tends to happen. In countries with established churches, where religious identity is ascribed rather than voluntary, people frequently tend toward secularism and in many cases become openly anticlerical. Countries without established churches, on the other hand, often experience a higher degree of genuine religious observance. Thus the United States with no established church and increasingly secular public life, continues to enjoy a far higher degree of religiosity that virtually all European countries with national churches. This is true by almost any measure of religious feeling; church attendance, the number of people who assert that they believe in God, or the level of private charitable donations to religious organizations” (p. 288).

The reasons for this that Fukuyama describes are that people may feel that it is an “unwanted burden” when ones religion is mandated. When people are free to choose their religious affiliation they have a genuine interest in doing that and their church affiliation feeds that interest for young and old alike. It is also likely that in a “free market” of religions, that they compete to attract and retain members. Churches with mandated membership not likely be motivated to become so competitive.

Completion is widely known to provide for a greater diversity, quality and ease of access to choices available to consumers, independent of the products involved. Why should it be any different for religious choices?

One of the reasons that America has been able to stave off this proportional youth decline that has afflicted Western Europe, and much of the rest of the developing societies in the world is that America has retained a fertility rate which is slightly above replacement levels. As you may deduce, below replacement birth rates for a socioculture spells disaster. Two of the natural correlates within developing societies are increased education (leading to later marriage and fewer children) and better medical care (leading to an increasing aged population and an increasing handicapped population). This means that proportionately there are fewer young people in the culture-sustaining population to work, invent, create wealth, pay taxes and fight wars, etc.

David Goldman (2011), How Civilizations Die: And Why Islam is Dying Too,  discusses the central influence of Judeo/Christian religion upon the relative reproductive rates and viability of America and Israel in contrast to less religious and largely atheist counties.

The Industrial world’s lowest fertility rates are encountered among the nations of Eastern Europe where atheism was the official ideology for generations. The highest fertility rates in the developed world are found in countries with a high degree of religious faith, namely the United States and Israel. And demographers have identified religion as a crucial factor in the differences among populations within countries. When faith goes, fertility vanishes, too” (Kindle Loc. 195).

Of the Islam’s overall declining fertility rate and its dire predictions for that civilization’s future, Goldman reports the following:

“In the Islamists’ own view, the encounter of Islam with the globalized world has had catastrophic effects on a religion so deeply rooted in the habits of traditional society that it cannot survive in the harsh light of modernity. The closing of the Muslim womb is a symptom of a shock to the spiritual condition of the Islamic world, a loss of faith more sudden and more devastating than the past century’s trend towards secularism in the West” (Kindle Loc. 492).

There is more to come soon.

VTM, 11/11/13

I Wonder If I Am A Libertarian # 7

June 27, 2013

Key Concepts of Libertarianism

By

David Boaz

January 1, 1999

I quote:

The key concepts of libertarianism have developed over many centuries. The first inklings of them can be found in ancient China, Greece, and Israel; they began to be developed into something resembling modern libertarian philosophy in the work of such seventeenth- and eighteenth-century thinkers as John Locke, David Hume, Adam Smith, Thomas Jefferson, and Thomas Paine.

Free Markets. To survive and to flourish, individuals need to engage in economic activity. The right to property entails the right to exchange property by mutual agreement. Free markets are the economic system of free individuals, and they are necessary to create wealth. Libertarians believe that people will be both freer and more prosperous if government intervention in people’s economic choices is minimized.

End of quote.

These assertions about a free markets, private ownership of property, the stultifying effects of governmental over-regulation, governmental ownership of businesses, and high tax rates to sustain an increasingly bloated, voracious and predatory governments are factual and beyond dispute.

However, one assertion needs special clarification because it is so universally mispercieved. Human’s can be largely free from governmental coercion, or the coercion of other people, and this is a main goal of a Libertarian cultural design. However, we are never free from the effects of our genetics, our learning histories, our current state of  health, or our immediate sociaocultural, economic, political and physical environments. The psychological laws and principles of conditioning and learning always affect us in major ways, without fail. And when we fail, we are failing to let them guide us.

The psychosocial casualties to which I refer are complex, layered and circular in nature; but our human behaviors remain a major part of this causal chain.

I will take, on faith and because we already did it one time, that humans can learn to design better sociocultures and that such improvements will in-turn shape more adaptive and generally beneficial forms of our thoughts, emotions and behaviors.

For an intellectually stunning and revealing book about human nature, the causes of our good and bad behaviors, and  important principles of cultural change, you must read Beyond Freedom and Dignity, by B. F. Skinner.

The assertions above are, or should be, beyond dispute. If someone wishes to argue against these bed-rock main features of human psychology or Libertarian cultural designs…the very principles that made America the greatest Nation on earth…I will ask that they do some reading to educate themselves.

A good start would be the following:

The Road To Serfdom, by F.A Hayek

The Path to Tyranny: A History of Free Society’s Descent into Tyranny, by Michael E. Newton

Libertarianism, by David Boaz

What It Means To Be A Libertarian, by Charles Murray

The Secret Knowledge: On The Dismantling of American Culture, by David Mamet

Trust: The Social Virtues and The Creation of Prosperity, by Francis Fukuyama

The End of History and the Last Man, by Francis Fukuyama

Basic Economics: A Common Sense Guide to the Economy, By Thomas Sowell

There are many more sources of historically factual and well-documented  information that powerfully support the basic tenants of psychology and Libertarianism. Some of these principles are counter-intuitive to ways of popular thinking, and that is the greatest of all problems now driving America’s decline.

In a word, what drives America’s decline is ignorance.

It is ignorance about the causes of the quality of our own behaviors, within an electorate that votes to design and redesign America’s political and social cultures so that its population may live long and well…or fail and fade into history.

To live long and well requires that our electorate understand the determinants of their own behavior and how various human behavior patterns will survive (or fail to survive) the many inter and intra-cultural stresses of the future, most of which are now known and often predictable.

V. Thomas Mawhinney, Ph.D.,  6/27/13

Destructive Moral Relativism

August 24, 2009

Destructive Moral Relativism

The following quote is taken from The Great Disruption: Human Nature and The Reconstruction of Social Order, by Francis Fukuyama.

“I said earlier that there were two main sources of the enlarged radius of trust: religion and politics. In the West, Christianity first established the principle of universality of human dignity, one that was brought down from the heavens and turned into a secular doctrine of  universal human equality by the enlightenment” (p. 279).

“liberal democracies today enshrine this principle of universal recognition.” (p.280)

“The chief question for the future is whether these universalistic forms of cultural identity will survive the onslaught from a principled belief in multiculturalism that goes beyond the toleration of cultural diversity to its active celebration and promotion. The moral miniaturization that was described in the earlier discussion of American civil society has come about only partly because the underlying society has become more diverse. The important driver of this process is the spread of a principled belief in moral relativism—the idea that no particular set of values or norms can or aught to be authoritative. When this relativism extends to the political values on which the regime itself is based, then liberalism begins to undermine itself” (pps. 281-282).

VTM, 8/24/09


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