Monday, April 26, 2010

The Problem With Purity

Simply put, it doesn’t work.

Good and evil. Democracy, communism, socialism, theocracy. Republicans, Democrats, Libertarians. Islam, Christianity, Buddhism. Black, White, Yellow.

I’d love to be a libertarian. John Galt, Dagny Talbert, Howard Roark. Rugged self-sufficiency in an attractive package.

I think I’d love to be religious following the “one true light.” But there are lots of lights.

I could even be a communist if I could overlook communism’s utter practical failure as a way to run a society.

Purity of position reduces communication and prevents problem solving.

“We” don’t talk these days, “we” being the various groups interested in an issue. Each group of we’s develops a doctrine, once it’s in place, well it’s a doctrine, the discussion is over. Ideological purity is entrenched. Each group of we’s then promotes and tries to extend the influence of its doctrine, bumping up against the trenches of a competing ideology.

Raw capitalism versus socialism. Christianity versus Islam. Western nations versus Asian ascendancy.

The solution is the merger of groups; though, I’m not at all sure, indeed, I haven’t a clue, how to do it.


Anonymous said...

I wouldn't say merge the groups, I'd say eliminate the labels and justify each idea on its own merits.

But, like you, I have no idea how to go about doing that.

Jenn said...

instead of purifying a good idea what they need to do is take that idea and write it to work for each of the different groups involved.

If Edison hadn't worked the kite with the copper wire we wouldn't have electricity (well someone else would have figured it out by now) but this idea opened the door for various forms of "Harnessing Energy" to work for different area's. Some nuclear, some coal, some TVA. But they took the idea and worked with it to make the idea work for the area it was needed. They did not perverse the idea into perfection because if it is that pure then there is no room for expansion and change and new versions of it.