sâmbătă, 29 august 2015

Democratic Longing for Dictatorship

The people are not so hostile to dictatorship even in democratic countries.

On the contrary, during the electoral campaigns, when the people show most intensively than ever their interest in politics, they are generally preferred those politicians who speak like virtual dictators. The greatest success belongs to the candidates who speak as if their future position will depend entirely on their will like in dictatorial regimes.

Since people’s interest in politics harshly diminishes once their candidate has been elected, we don’t really know if they would tolerate a real dictatorship from their past favorite candidate, if the political constitution would allow it.

Maybe, they would not. However, the reason does not seem to be their refusal of the idea of being governed by the will of a single person, but rather their habit of being free from a continual appreciation of the elected politician. The dictators always want to invade the personal life of their people, but the people are mainly interested in the problems of their own lives. The tolerance to dictatorship is covertly used by many democratic politicians whenever they impose to the citizens certain beliefs which concern their life, for instance, concerning the sexual conduct, their relations to some categories of people, or their wealth. Generally, the way of hiding their person is to speak in the name of the people or of the country.

miercuri, 26 august 2015

Which 'us' is the state?

It is easy to discover that apart from its geographical place the identity of a country mainly consists in a bundle of myths and legends. There are myths because the main character of all the statements on the authority of the state is a fictional one. The state is not as concrete as his geographical position and it is self-contradictory to say that is identical to the people who live inside its borders, since the people speak against it whenever they consider that the authorities act in abusive ways. Moreover, the authorities say that they represent the state, not that they are the state.

However, the state is most often considered to be a mythical ‘us’. The people who speak against it are unsatisfied that it is less ‘us’ than they expected to be. Thus, they may protest that the mission of state to protect them from internal and external enemies is not fulfilled in their interest or that the civil rights do not protect all of ‘us’, especially the individuals hardly to be numbered among the majority of people.

Shortly, the people unveil the myth of ‘us’ for pointing to some real ‘us’.

To some extent, such protests are useful, because they prevent the authorities which claim to represent the state to not figure out that they are that ‘us’ and to act as such against the rest of the people.

On the other hand, the protests contribute to a great misunderstanding of the identity of state, forcing to bring the mythical ‘us’ to the concrete ‘us’ of the community of the protesters. They cannot be the state either, but they downgrade the myths of the country in a conflicting affair between individuals. There is not a national defense or the justice which guarantees the respect of civil rights anymore, but only brutal and cruel soldiers and police officer or unjust judges. Since the authorities has generally a weaker voice in the public space than the protesters, the men who represent it may easily to cease to act in the name of the mythical ‘us’,  and to search for being a part of the concrete ‘us’ of the protesters.

However, the ‘us’ of the protesters which sometime succeeds in attracting the authorities on its side leaves out those other citizens of the state who do not speak against the state, but expect that it will always act in the name of the mythical ‘us’. Many times, those silent citizens are more than the vocal ones, but they have to obey to a state that could become a paramount voice of the minority of protesters.

duminică, 23 august 2015

Urban Weight

It is difficult to say that the passers-by seen on the streets are perceived as humans or not only as parts of the urban landscape. Maybe when we walk without paying much attention to them, they seem indeed to form a sort of moving landscape.

The thin people with swift steps look like moving statues. They may mean something if we look closer to them, but essentially they walk and run to give meaning to the things they meet without clarifying anything to us about their person.

Meanwhile, the fat people look like some huge buildings. Their slow movements allow us to see them almost like immobile houses. Their weight seems to say that wherever they go, the things they meet will be housed in them. The fat people will give them a meaning in this way. Differently from the thin people, through the appearance of being able to receive the things like dwellers of the houses they are, we can partly perceive those meanings just looking at them.  All those things should mean some sort of food or comfort for the fat people.

Since the urban landscapes often inspire the feeling that we do not matter so much in their largeness, the image of fat passers-by may help us to think that our city or town is really ours like food. At least, they prepare us to accept to be swallowed by the huge buildings we enter.

sâmbătă, 22 august 2015

Those Annoying Human Rights

Tissot, Emigrants
The crowds of migrants which invade European countries show in many faces that human being searched by many European thinkers for discovering the human rights.

It was that human being who is free from any political authority, who is defenseless, who struggles for its survival.

Many past thinkers collect the examples of that being from the savages met in colonial countries or from the stories about feral children in order to determine which are the primary human needs and rights.

Now, that human being is before European eyes in the flesh. However, it is not an object of study, neither an occasion to apply the respect for human rights, but a trouble for those countries which claim to be founded on the principle of respecting the human rights and on the principle of guaranteeing the chances for prosperity to every individual.

Those allegations prove to be wrong. The primeval human being they used seems to be an illusion. It was the illusion of a man who cannot really act for modifying the political and economical reality.

The significant change of society supposed by the focus on the human needs and rights was tempered by a sort of subjective emotional reactions concerning humans and animals.

Through the actual technological devices, many people can feel strong emotions about a humanitarian case or another. Such emotions are not caused by real people, but about their images represented in the media, which are in fact as illusory as the images of primeval human beings used by the past European thinkers. Moreover, the actual images are more vivid than the past ones, so that their watchers consume much of their sympathetic feelings only by watching them. The action for helping the people in need is viewed as an annoying complication. Similarly, the new migrants are considered by the political authorities annoying persons.

Therefore, the Europeans found themselves again in the past condition of only thinking about primary needs and rights of human beings. In the past, they thought of them and then they have been able to destroy some authoritarian political regimes. It is far more difficult to modify if not to destroy the great and convenient lie about human rights and prosperity which allegedly founded the new democratic regimes.

vineri, 21 august 2015

The Egalitarian Ideal

Shaun Downey, 'Boy Amongst the Birches'

Our first image of society is not egalitarian. Firstly, we see the people standing upright around us. They are taller than us, so that they seem to us as mastering the troubles of the world by being above them. The world looks to us cloudy and mainly indifferent, full of unknown people and things, many of them apparently without any sense.

Those people are familiar to us, often being our own parents and relatives, or educators who are perceived as existing for our help.

For this reason, the upright posture from which we can master the troubles of the world seems also familiar and reachable in the future.

Afterwards, we understand that to stand between other people and things did not mean to be above them. On the contrary, the standing position reveals itself as a way to stay firmly under other unreachable people and things or to attempt eagerly to be above them.

Meanwhile, the world cannot get more sense to us; it keeps to appear cloudy, sometimes dark and threatening. Moreover, it seems to provide all those troublesome people and things which do not let us to rise.

The egalitarian ideal comes especially as a need to give a sense to that cloudy world, and not as a personal benefit, since we deeply want to be upright by ourselves, not equal to other persons.

The impossibility of building an egalitarian society cannot be excused by the fact that many of us really succeed in standing upright. An inegalitarian society keeps the world cloudy or without a clear sense.  It remains a nonsense that some of us are up and other down or a matter of pure chance, far from that first image of the easy way to that future age when we will overcome the troubles of the world.

joi, 20 august 2015

The Remorseful Killer

When someone kills another person, we may say that he has the deepest experience of knowing her like a human being. We cannot know a human being better than by reaching to the point where its life ends. The love is also knowledge of an individual until to the point where he or she cannot be an individual anymore, but only a partner.

It is not a kind of knowledge similar to an act of learning theoretical matters, but a plain exposure of the human being impersonated by the victim.

It is so plain, so that the killer might see himself in that living picture of human limits, weakness, fears, and humiliation portrayed by the victim.

In spite of the killer’s desire to kill for getting power over his victim, he is under her power of revealing humanity in its lowest forms. When he continues to be bad, he in fact develops all those low forms of humanity in his person by losing his place among other people.

The remorse which could make him a better person is a form of estranging from his victim. Therefore, the remorse ceases to be about the victim, but rather about the aggressor and about his refugee in that field of shallow and egoistical emotions which dominates the human relations. Those emotions do not contain the knowledge of other persons until to their final point of their life. They are equally far from love and hate. The remorse might bring forgiveness, but not in the name of the victim which was abandoned by the remorseful killer.