“For so many in the techno-elite, even those who don’t entirely subscribe to the unlimited optimism of the Singularity (The Singularity is a notion of some futurists…Google it if you wish), the notion of perpetual progress and economic growth is somehow taken for granted. As a former classicist turned technologist, I’ve always lived with the shadow of the fall of Rome, the failure of its intellectual culture, and the stasis that gripped the Western world for the better part of a thousand years. What I fear most is that we will lack the will and the foresight to face the world’s problems squarely, but will instead retreat from them into superstition and ignorance.” (random quote from the internet.) .
In an earlier post, I questioned the presumption of what constituted an “Advanced Society”..ie; The notion of perpetual progress and economic growth is somehow taken for granted vs. the concept of creating a deliberate stable, sustainable social environment.
While the notion of “perpetual progress” demands a “ laissez faire” economy, the latter would encourage a more “softly, softly” approach. To say that the latter would constitute a kind of “anti-intellectualism” is wrong..I would say that it is more of a “steering” of intellectual prowess toward community relevant advances, rather than toward that which enriches and can be utilized only by a wealthy elite. The barbarian idea of plunder and rapine to enrich the few rather than the most is anti-intellectualism..a degree of thought would prove that, like a garden, a sustainable harvest brings greater wealth in the long run rather than a one-off slash and burn approach..”softly, softly catchee monkey”. But that is not to say that the Barbarian class hasn’t learned by their mistakes.
In ancient times, the Scythians, a most barbaric nomadic tribe from the Steppes of Eurasia , would contract the Grecian artists and artisans to manufacture works of beauty in plundered gold for their own vanity. The barbarian hand, while being adept at wielding a weapon, seems always to lack the finesse and temperament for cultured art. One cannot sing through gritted teeth nor distribute equal share of wealth with a clenched fist!
The IPA. , considered in these days as being THE VOICE of the right-wing think tanks in Aust’, is one such example of “Barbarian Intellectualism”. Reading articles from personalities of this institution, one can visualize through the chosen jargon and clichéd phrases, them trawling through their university days learned texts with “join-the-dots” simplistic logic that is more borrowed-intellectualism by rote-learn than by inquisitive inquiry. They will even cunningly reach to progressive writers to give ‘legitimizing cred’ to their words by quoting from very dissenting sources, as if the reader cannot discern their cunning…just like the schoolchild trick of the older boy offering the younger child ; “One BIG ‘gob-stopper’ for all those little ‘jaffas’”…we’ve all witnessed THAT scenario and it’s nothing but insulting to have such juvenile methodology foisted upon us in our old age.
Truly, many of the arguments put up by the “Barbarian Intellectuals” , no matter who they quote, are little more than excuses for behaviour, rather than a seeking to discover better ways .
If there is one famous quote that could embrace the entire Barbarian Intellectualism ethos and moral direction, it would have to be that ghastly logic from the Vietnam War , where one ; “…must destroy the village to save the village.” And we have seen just how far such insane logic has taken the governance of this once well-administered country .
The social-suicidal implementation of the IPA. “wish list” has driven both the object and the integrity of conversation in this country to a depth never before plumbed. To have to listen to the childish babbling of its creators is to give too much valued-time to too little thought. The influence of such puerile philosophy on the ministers of the govt’ demonstrates the even lower level of capable discourse amongst the front bench of that govt’.
To call this govt’; “capable” is to outright lie..To call the govt’ of the day “culpable” is to be somewhere closer to reality…as to what they are “culpable” of is for a future commission to ascertain…but the least charge that can be leveled is the one of “cultural barbarism”.