Wednesday, January 13, 2021

893: The Angry Mob....

 What we witnessed on January 6 in the US, the inflammatory language of a president, his son, and his lawyer was everything that happened in the 1930s in Europe. The mob cheered and took action.


After a fifty years of market forces, competition and privatizations and a kind of meritocratic attitude something is happening in the Western world.


It is not a specific American phenomenon. Far from it. Almost all European countries have to face it too, the emergence of right-wing populist parties, an increasing number of really angry people.


Four themes recur each time. Firstly, these parties put the national interest first. They oppose a European or global dynamic that undermines the right of self-determination of nation-states. 


They are skeptical or negative about the European Union and want to protect their own society or culture. In the US it results in pleas to leave the federation and become independent. 


Second, they almost always adhere to traditional norms and values. Some are against such things as abortion, 


euthanasia or same-sex marriage, others want extra support for traditional family life, and some say they defend Christian values. 


Third, they argue for more authoritarian forms of leadership and tough measures against crime. They advocate strict enforcement of the law, more room for the police and sometimes even a reintroduction of the death penalty.


Last but not least, they want to combat further immigration, especially when it concerns migrants with a Muslim background. 


Germany, the Netherlands and Austria have parties that denounce the so-called "Islamization"  of society, in Belgium the populist right expects emphatically migrants to adapt and assimilate.


The breeding ground for this development is the one-sided focus of politics on the economy and economic growth, 


the emphasis on the fact that everyone must survive in society on their own. This has led to an ever-deepening gap between rich and poor, 


between promising and disadvantaged people, between the low-skilled and the highly educated. Numerous sociological studies show this.


In such research, a  few things keep coming back. First, all populists assume a "people" that they not only place central but also believe to have a certain homogeneity. Call it nationalism.


That is why they have an aversion to immigrants and other "foreigners" who would affect the unity of the people. 


Second, they contrast the people with an "elite" that serves its own purposes and considers itself above the people. 


One can envisage a political elite, administrators, but also an economic elite, businessmen, a communicative elite, journalists, an intellectualelite. scientists or a legal elite, judges. 


Third, they claim that the misbehavior of that elite is resulting in a serious "crisis", requiring firm action. 


Well, if these are the elements that characterize all forms of populism, then it is clear that this is indeed diametrically opposed to liberal thinking. 


After all, this liberal thinking does not start with a people but with single individuals, it does not plead for coercive action 


but for market forces and it does not easily find elites arrogant because it assumes that they know what they are doing. 


We can also rephrase it by saying that neoliberalism and populism are two mirrored moral universes. 


The pursuit of neo-liberals is completely reprehensible in the eyes of populists, but the reverse is equally true. 


That does not make a search for the right middle easier as we can see in such an extremely polarized country like the US.


Thank you for your attention again....


MacMillan The Encyclopedia of Philosophy, 2nd edition
Routledge Encyclopedia of Philosophy, 1995
Gabriel van den Brink:"Ruw Ontwaken uit een Neoliberale Droom",, 2020

The Discussion

[13:17] .: Beertje :. (beertje.beaumont): Thank you Herman

[13:17] herman Bergson: And these are the fruits of 50 years of neoliberalism...... and klepto-capitalism

[13:18] herman Bergson: A growing divide in society

[13:18] .: Beertje :. (beertje.beaumont): where will it lead to in the near future?

[13:19] herman Bergson: Yes my question too

[13:19] Windows Bhalti: Thank you, Professor

[13:19] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): and the result is an out of the pan into the fire solution, back to auritarian leaders like Hitler, Khadaffi etc which in the end will just molest his peopla and start wars

[13:19] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): look what happened in Syria

[13:19] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): this is NOT a solution to the neoliberalism problem

[13:20] .: Beertje :. (beertje.beaumont): Syria is at war for 11 years now

[13:20] Windows Bhalti: I wonder where the Communist Agenda fits into all this?

[13:20] herman Bergson: Indeed Bejiita...but there is some hope

[13:20] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): because people wanted freedom and the result was that he diceded to kill everyone

[13:20] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): a true monster

[13:20] herman Bergson: Is there a communist agenda Windows?

[13:20] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): because he was bling with his power

[13:21] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): blind

[13:21] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): its greed but in another even more horrific way

[13:21] herman Bergson: If you are thinking of China or Russia...I only see a power hunger agenda

[13:21] Windows Bhalti: Apparently there seems to be, Professor, with their takeover of the UN and WHO, several world seaports and news media.

[13:21] .: Beertje :. (beertje.beaumont): i thought this is not about communists in the US

[13:22] herman Bergson: I agree Windows....but I rather see it as geopolitical powerplay

[13:22] Windows Bhalti: nods

[13:22] herman Bergson: to secure resources for instance

[13:23] herman Bergson: China invades Africa....I guess just because it is a continent with lots of essential resources

[13:24] herman Bergson: Like OPEC once could manipulate the world by manipulating its oil resources

[13:24] Windows Bhalti: the UN, WHO and news medias are resources as such?

[13:25] herman Bergson: what is more worrisome in my opinion is the divide in society

[13:25] Windows Bhalti: nods

[13:25] herman Bergson: there is a divide between high educated and low educated people...and this devide is becoming more influential

[13:26] herman Bergson: Trump's base is 57% low educated people

[13:26] herman Bergson: In IEurope you see the same

[13:26] .: Beertje :. (beertje.beaumont): so education is very important

[13:26] herman Bergson: populist parties appeal to the low educated groups

[13:27] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): indeed Bertje

[13:27] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): same method that Hitler used

[13:27] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): we now see the same horrific things starting again

[13:27] herman Bergson: It is important if you return to the idealism of the 1970s Beertje.....the belief that it was possible to create equal chances in education for EVERYONE....

[13:28] herman Bergson: not only for the elite.....but for everyone

[13:28] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): populism as said is NO solution, we just go back to WW2 times

[13:28] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): or worse

[13:29] herman Bergson: When I was a student of educational theory this was THE topic...equal chances for everyone.smaller classes etc

[13:29] .: Beertje :. (beertje.beaumont): education should be free for everyone

[13:29] herman Bergson: Nothing changed in the past 50 years.....

[13:29] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): yes

[13:30] herman Bergson: Let me give you an example......

[13:30] Windows Bhalti: Dr James Todaro said about "Groupthink", " I learned more about critical and independent thought process from homeschooling than I did in 8 years and $500k of college and medical school education. "

[13:30] herman Bergson: in 1972 everybody was convinced that education would improve having smaller groups in class....

[13:31] herman Bergson: (Depends on what parents you have Windows :-)

[13:32] Windows Bhalti: Very much so, Professor. Dr Todaro was a lucky man, indeed

[13:32] herman Bergson: In 1972 classes were 27 pupils at least.... now 50 years later....the groups are even 33 pupils today!

[13:32] .: Beertje :. (beertje.beaumont): yes true

[13:32] .: Beertje :. (beertje.beaumont): too many children in 1 classroom

[13:32] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): yes

[13:32] herman Bergson: All went well with the economy, the stock markets, the shareholders etc etc,....

[13:33] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): all while the CEOs of the schools are counting money in their tax paradises

[13:33] herman Bergson: Not a penny was spent on the (nonprofit) departments....

[13:33] .: Beertje :. (beertje.beaumont): when i was studying we had only 8 in class..i was lucky I guess

[13:33] herman Bergson: And look what a smart girl you are now, Beertje ^_^

[13:33] .: Beertje :. (beertje.beaumont): hahahahhahaha

[13:33] .: Beertje :. (beertje.beaumont): oh dear

[13:34] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): lol

[13:34] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako):

[13:34] herman Bergson: But look around.....

[13:34] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): true

[13:34] herman Bergson: education, helthcare, elderly care, social it....

[13:35] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): and indeed smaller classes = better education because the teacher can address each student individually more easy

[13:35] herman Bergson: they all are at the end of the list if it comes to distributing the enormous wealth of our societies

[13:35] herman Bergson: sure Bejiita

[13:36] .: Beertje :. (beertje.beaumont): they have to work hard for less money

[13:36] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): hmm

[13:36] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): not right fir sure

[13:36] herman Bergson: The average income of US$36.000 a year in the US seems to be lower than 40 years ago for the same jobs....I heard

[13:37] herman Bergson: But there is hope.....

[13:38] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): someone found a combination to the CEOs safe?

[13:38] herman Bergson: Even our liberal prime minister said.....the profits of the companies increase daily.....but the workers don't see a penny of it in their salary...that has to change

[13:38] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): ROBIN HOOD TIME!

[13:38] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako):

[13:38] CB Axel: lol, Bejiita

[13:39] herman Bergson: That statement is the combination to that safe Bejiita ^_^

[13:39] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako):

[13:39] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): well lets begin there then

[13:39] herman Bergson: There seem to be small cracks in the neoliberal armor.....

[13:40] .: Beertje :. (beertje.beaumont): het pensioenfondsgeld klotst tegen de plinten en toch moeten de ouderen inleveren....sorry ik kan het niet in het engels zeggen

[13:40] herman Bergson: There is a lot of capital in the pension funds indeed Beertje.....

[13:41] herman Bergson: But they have promised that 2021 will not bring a decrease of pension :-)

[13:41] .: Beertje :. (beertje.beaumont): really?

[13:41] .: Beertje :. (beertje.beaumont): it increased 20% already

[13:41] herman Bergson: yes,,,,ABP said so, for instance :-)

[13:41] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): ok

[13:42] .: Beertje :. (beertje.beaumont): why punish the oldest people , what have they done that they deserve this?

[13:42] herman Bergson: you mean...decreased, I guess and 20% is rather heavy

[13:42] .: Beertje :. (beertje.beaumont): minder+ decrease?

[13:42] herman Bergson: yes

[13:42] .: Beertje :. (beertje.beaumont): =

[13:42] .: Beertje :. (beertje.beaumont): ok

[13:42] herman Bergson: increase = stijgen

[13:43] .: Beertje :. (beertje.beaumont): ok..sorry

[13:44] herman Bergson: It's going to be  an interesting future.....the rough awaking from neoliberalism is happening these days

[13:44] CB Axel: Beertje is trying to make me learn Dutch. LOL

[13:44] .: Beertje :. (beertje.beaumont): lol...als je wil kan ik dat nog veel meer

[13:44] herman Bergson: Told you she is a smart girl, CB ^_^

[13:44] .: Beertje :. (beertje.beaumont): grins

[13:44] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): well its soooo close to readable for me to but quite not there i can clearly make one or 2 words like those out

[13:45] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): in swedish its similar

[13:45] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): decrease = monska, increase = stiga/öka

[13:45] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): minska

[13:45] herman Bergson: Sorry peeps, but I don't gonna change tis into a language class :-)

[13:45] CB Axel: That's interesting, Bejiita.

[13:45] CB Axel: Right

[13:46] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): so quite close but yet not

[13:46] herman Bergson: But as an assignment......

[13:46] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): the word lekker = good?

[13:46] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): läcker in swedish = tasty

[13:46] .: Beertje :. (beertje.beaumont): lekker = tasty

[13:46] herman Bergson: look out for  signals....articles, etc which question the belief in market forces.....for instance

[13:46] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): aaa but then also almost same

[13:47] herman Bergson: Read Michal Sandel for instance....

[13:47] herman Bergson: and there are more

[13:47] CB Axel writes down that name.

[13:47] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): ok

[13:47] herman Bergson: Michael Sandel

[13:48] herman Bergson: Guess you now may have some idea what populism means.......

[13:48] Windows Bhalti: Michael J Sandel?

[13:48] .: Beertje :. (beertje.beaumont): what will happen if Trump thrown out of office?

[13:48] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): it means bad things for sure

[13:49] herman Bergson: it is a kind of sickening nostalgia.....a longing for the good old times

[13:49] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): not the right way from neoliberalism

[13:49] .: Beertje :. (beertje.beaumont): tomorrow?

[13:49] CB Axel: But those times never really existed.

[13:49] herman Bergson: Trump and others are just power-hungry politicians who use those sentiments to obtain more power

[13:50] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): nope, unless u think authoritarian murderers like hitler were good leaders

[13:50] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): its NOT back to good ol times

[13:50] herman Bergson: there are people who believe so Bejiita

[13:50] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): sadly there is

[13:50] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): indeed the good ol times never existed

[13:51] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): unless u think of an alternate steampunk reality

[13:51] herman Bergson: indeed Bejiita....

[13:51] herman Bergson: and a solution of this growing problem is to find in the future

[13:51] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): whaere all are happy and live a great life and make their maazing macines and inventions together and have a nice cup of tea

[13:52] .: Beertje :. (beertje.beaumont): the tea I believe in..the rest..i must see

[13:52] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): thats the utopian good old times world I tru create in Unity at moment, but that is a game engine, not reality

[13:52] herman Bergson: I guess I tortures your brains enough again for today....:-)

[13:52] herman Bergson: SO let me thank you again for your participation....

[13:52] Windows Bhalti: :)

[13:52] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): YAY! (yay!)

[13:52] .: Beertje :. (beertje.beaumont) shouts: sipping tea

[13:52] .: Beertje :. (beertje.beaumont): hahhaha

[13:53] .: Beertje :. (beertje.beaumont): sorry

[13:53] herman Bergson: Class dismissed...

[13:53] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): good idea

[13:53] Windows Bhalti: Thank you, Professor.

[13:53] CB Axel: Thank you, Herman and class.

[13:53] .: Beertje :. (beertje.beaumont): Thank you Herman

[13:53] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): i actually had a cup while working on that game before, to get in right mod

[13:53] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): mood

[13:53] herman Bergson: I guess your tea was too hot, Beertje

[13:53] .: Beertje :. (beertje.beaumont): yes true

[13:53] .: Beertje :. (beertje.beaumont): :))))

[13:53] Particle Physicist Bejiita (bejiita.imako): hehehe

[13:53] bergfrau Apfelbaum: Thank you Herman and class!

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