I have already featured the following from Seversky as our quote of the day:
I do not hold that there are no binding moral principles. I say we are entitled to decide for ourselves which moral codes should bind us. This does not mean that abominations like the Nazis or Stalinist Russia or Pol Pot’s Cambodia are inevitable. Those regimes imposed their policies by the most brutal violence and certainly did not seek the opinions, let alone the consent, of those they oppressed.
In my prior post I highlighted the incoherence of the first two sentences. In this post I want to focus on the faulty assumptions in the remainder of the post. Seversky declares that the link between violence and materialism is not “inevitable.” But he is plainly wrong. Materialism posits that rocks and automobiles and dogs and people are manifestations of the same thing: particles in motion. If a person believes materialism is true he must also believe certain corollaries that logically follow. Materialist Will Provine sums these up nicely:
1) No gods worth having exist; 2) no life after death exists; 3) no ultimate foundation for ethics exists; 4) no ultimate meaning in life exists; and 5) human free will is nonexistent . . .
Those are not my views. Those are the conclusions of an honest materialist.
The materialist must necessarily believe that human beings are nothing but clever hairless apes with no more intrinsic value than dogs. Eigenstate, who comments frequently on this site, is particularly honest about this feature of materialism. He argues that like a dollar which has no intrinsic value, the only reason a human has any value at all is because he happens to be subjectively valued. If he were not subjectively valued, he would have no value at all. Brutal. But certainly true if materialism is true.
Lenin famously justified murdering anti-communists by quipping, “to make an omelet you have to break some eggs.” Of course, the “eggs” in that sentence represent human lives. And if you are a materialist who believes that a human has no more intrinsic value than an egg, the sentiment makes perfect sense. Similarly, Mao said, “Political power grows out of the barrel of a gun.”
In the absence of acknowledgement of a binding objective moral code, there is only one law, the law of the jungle where the strong prevail and the weak succumb. If a strong man subscribes to Christian ethics, calculations such as “I have to murder X number of people to achieve my utopian political objective” are off limits. That is the very reason Hitler hated Christianity and, following Nietzsche, called it a religion of slaves.
It follows, therefore, that the ultimate method by which the strong impose their preferences on the weak – violence – is not an aberration of materialist metaphysics; instead history has proved many times over that it is a feature of it.
It is now fashionable even among liberals to deplore the 20th Century materialist dictators who killed millions (it was not always so; let us never forget that Stalin was once a liberal hero; he was Time magazine’s man of the year in both 1939 and 1942). But the spirit of violence that motivated those dictators has never gone away. If anything, the spirit that says the strong may sacrifice the helpless if the helpless get in their way is stronger than ever.
The same spirit that led to this in 1945
leads to this in 2015: