Intelligent Design

For Progressives, the Only “Principle” That Matters is This: We Advance Principles When They Suit Our Interests, and we Abandon Them When They Don’t

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Two recent posts have highlighted the moral and intellectual rot that threatens Western Civilization.  In the first, materialist Seversky expressed a moral nihilism that is breathtaking in its scope.  I asked him if the ancient practice of killing unwanted girl babies was an affirmatively good thing.  His answer:  “It was an affirmatively good thing for them.”  He hastened to add that he personally does not approve of the practice.  But he added that there is no standard against which to measure whether his preference in the matter is superior to those who would kill the little babies. 

I asked Sev if the same reasoning applied to slavery, human sacrifice and genocide.  His answer:  “Yes, it does.” 

So, infanticide, slavery, human sacrifice, and genocide are not Sev’s cup of tea.  But they are others’ cup of tea.  And damned if Sev can say their preference in tea is inferior to his own.

In the second post our William J. Murray discussed materialist Brother Brian’s definition of oppression:  “Oppression is when an identifiable group is forced to do something because another identifiable group says they must.”

WJM pointed out to Brian that his definition would apply to any law.  For example, a law requiring employers not to discriminate against black people is oppressive under Brian’s formula. Under Brian’s principle, the state would be engaging in “oppression” if one identifiable group (racial bigots) is forced to do something (hire black people) because another identifiable group (everyone else acting through the legislature) says they must.

Of course, what Brian actually meant but did not say was that “oppression” happens whenever anyone does something he personally does not like.  And the principle can therefore be turned on and off at will.  Brian does not like it?  Oppression.  Brian likes it?  Go right ahead.

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Progressive “principles” are never really principles at all.  When you scratch a progressive you will find underneath a fascist.  And fascists are interested in one and only one thing.  Power.  When it furthers their striving for power, fascist progressives can sound all lofty and principled (like Brian’s response to WMJ).  But when the principles they just announced ten minutes ago interfere with their quest for power, you can be sure they will be jettisoned in microseconds.

Progressives like Brian always play according to the formula Frank Herbert ascribed to Maud ’dib in Children of Dune:

“When I am weaker than you, I ask you for freedom because that is according to your principles; when I am stronger than you, I take away your freedom because that is according to my principles.”

7 Replies to “For Progressives, the Only “Principle” That Matters is This: We Advance Principles When They Suit Our Interests, and we Abandon Them When They Don’t

  1. 1
    jcfrk101 says:

    In one word, their only principle is power.

  2. 2
    wyseguy says:

    Why wouldn’t the only principle be power? In the progressive world view, what is wrong with the world is that people are either insufficiently governed, insufficiently educated, or both. In our society, political power is the means to control both the means of governance and the means of education. For progressives, power is the only way to perfect the human condition. Unfortunately, even a cursory study of the 20th Century shows the lust for power being largely a vehicle for tragedy and mass death.

  3. 3
    Barry Arrington says:

    Coincidentally, here is an example of what I am talking about.

  4. 4
    vmahuna says:

    Up until the VERY Leftist Roosevelt administration took over Washington in 1933, there was a standard legal acceptance of “Freedom of Association”. And under Freedom of Association, I could choose to fire you today because I was in a bad mood and refuse to sell you my house because you were a Catholic. This was UNIVERSALLY accepted and had been the STANDARD practice in society. The Rooseveltians changed this by SUDDENLY having their Department of “Justice” insist that a man could NOT be fired for joining a union or having a haircut his boss didn’t like. And once Freedom of Association had been thrown out of Labor Relations, there was a downhill slide in ALL other social encounters, ending with Open Housing in the ’60s and then more recently followed by courts FORCING businesses (i.e., bakers of wedding cakes) to do things the business believed to be morally wrong.
    So, you guys generally need to read more History. I mean, was it ever Morally Wrong to execute a person for Blasphemy or Apostasy or several other Crimes Against Faith? Moslems of course are still VERY active in flinging non-Moslems from “high places” or stoning them to death, just as described in the Old Testament.
    Ireland is the ONLY nation in the history of the world that converted to Christianity without a SINGLE martyr. Why? Because the Druids weren’t going to KILL anyone for what they believed about God. Once they had the upper hand, Christians of course killed Druids as “heretics” or “devil-worshippers”. Makes ya wonder about how people base their Morality.

  5. 5
    john_a_designer says:

    Seversky believes:

    I believe that the overwhelming majority of ordinary, decent people, if honestly presented with the best information available will choose a moral solution. This is why I believe consensus morality is the only alternative to some sort of imposed command morality, whether theological or ideological. The problem in democracies is that politicians are rarely honest about their real intentions and treat good information as a rare and precious commodity not to be lightly handed out to just anyone. The problem is, how do we prevent the people we choose to run things for us from being corrupted by the power we hand them?

    https://uncommondescent.com/intelligent-design/severskey-is-honest/#comment-672632

    How do we arrive at any kind of consensus without some kind of interpersonal standard which we can use to judge whose moral beliefs or opinions have merit and whose do not? If all moral beliefs and opinions are equal, which they must be according moral subjectivism and relativism, then such a standard does not exist and all talk of so-called consensus is illusory.

  6. 6
    OldArmy94 says:

    You hit the nail on the head, Barry. Socialists aren’t interested in the welfare of those they claim to champion. They really lust for power, and the vote of the gullible is their vehicle to the throne. After all, when did you last see a socialist leader (dictator) who lived among his “people” and shared in their misery? NEVER, of course, is the correct answer.

  7. 7
    john_a_designer says:

    If there is no such thing as moral truth then according to anti-realist all we’re left with are just arbitrary subjective opinions. How are an atheists subjective opinions (or anyone else’s) binding on everyone else? Again, from an antirealist view, moral obligations are just delusions. That’s all they can be.

    The following is a comment from an earlier thread that is worth repeating again here.

    The objectivist [or moral realist] would argue that there must be a real standard of honesty that applies universally to all members of society. Indeed, society would break down if people weren’t obligated to be honest and tell the truth. Think of government, criminal justice or commerce. When people are dishonest our basic institutions begin to break down.

    We have a number of interlocutors who show up here who proudly self-identify as moral subjectivists. How can we trust anything any of them say if they are not obligated to be honest and tell the truth? Why would they be obligated if there is no real standard of honesty?

    https://uncommondescent.com/intelligent-design/the-is-ought-problem-is-it-a-true-dichotomy-or-a-deceptive-bluff/#comment-660736

    Our interlocutors appear to not only have a problem with honesty in the moral or ethical sense but in the intellectual sense as well. Frankly, I don’t how we can have any kind of honest dialogue, discussion or debate unless we begin with an objective common ground standard of honesty. But how can we start there if no such common ground standard to begin with?

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