It takes a long time to show, however. Like any other subtle change, there’s no obvious signs until years later when you look back over how things have changed.
When your society is built around a center, like a solid tradition (culture, language, values, customs, heritage, religion and calendar), you know what is expected of you. You know what will be rewarded, and what will be punished.
In a diverse society, united by political dogma (liberal democracy, consumerism and individualism), there is no such expectation. Everything is permitted; however, if things don’t turn out well, it’s your fault. From fear of failure, people cling to an even greater conformity under these “free” systems.
One research found that lack of a center makes people trust each other less, become more paranoid, and generally have more miserable lives:
Harvard political scientist Robert Putnam — famous for “Bowling Alone,” his 2000 book on declining civic engagement — has found that the greater the diversity in a community, the fewer people vote and the less they volunteer, the less they give to charity and work on community projects. In the most diverse communities, neighbors trust one another about half as much as they do in the most homogenous settings. The study, the largest ever on civic engagement in America, found that virtually all measures of civic health are lower in more diverse settings.
The study is part of a fascinating new portrait of diversity emerging from recent scholarship. Diversity, it shows, makes us uncomfortable — but discomfort, it turns out, isn’t always a bad thing. Unease with differences helps explain why teams of engineers from different cultures may be ideally suited to solve a vexing problem. Culture clashes can produce a dynamic give-and-take, generating a solution that may have eluded a group of people with more similar backgrounds and approaches. At the same time, though, Putnam’s work adds to a growing body of research indicating that more diverse populations seem to extend themselves less on behalf of collective needs and goals. – Boston Globe
We don’t think of diverse societies as totalitarian because we are not being forced at gunpoint to do what a leader demands. But we are being forced.
If you say something unpopular, or are weird in one of the unstated ways that any of the special interest groups don’t like, you’ll be unemployable. People won’t want to befriend you, or date you. You get relegated to the basement, forever alone. That’s a big threat and so people march in line without having to be threatened.
Diversity makes instability through this method. You trade a society with a center for one where no one agrees, so if you act, it should be for a goal universally acknowledged as “good” or at least “pleasurable”: food, sex, monetary success, social popularity, collecting objects and/or being popular.
Any truth that is unpopular — and that’s any truth that is inconvenient to the individuals out there — gets the thumbs down. That means that you who say that truth are going to face social ostracism, a type of coercion that may hurt as much as being physically beaten:
A new study finds that our brains make little distinction between the sting of being rebuffed by peers — or by a lover, boss or family member — and the physical pain that arises from disease or injury. The new findings are published this week in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.
Researchers from the University of Michigan, Columbia University and the University of Colorado put 40 individuals who were brokenhearted by a recent breakup into a brain scanner and watched as each dumpee gazed upon a photo of his or her dumper and pondered the hurt he or she felt at having been spurned. In separate scanning sessions, the subjects had the laboratory equivalent of a hot poker held to the forearm (an 8 on a 10-point pain scale).
The functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) scanned the subjects and showed their brains responding both to emotional hurt and physical pain with increased blood flow to a wide range of common regions — a clear sign of “neural overlap” in the way we process and experience social and physical pain. – LAT
Under a diverse society, competition and dogma rule the day. You are competing with others for jobs, mates and social esteem. You must do so according to the dogma, which is a political idea that replaces culture (examples: Communism, the Fuehrer, equality, Jacobinism). This means that every action you take is not a willing contribution, but a conformist action for a material reward. Honor, fidelity, honesty and love don’t survive long under such an assault by convenience and herd-think.
The result is an increasing alienated, lonely, miserable, dog-eat-dog and rancorous society:
Research suggests that despite having much more materially than previous generations, the country is no happier than it was half a century ago.
Experts warn that unless we undergo a “radical cultural change”, Britain will slide into unprecedented depths of despair blighted by rising rates of suicide and depression.
Led by Lord Layard, Professor of economics at the London School of Economics, it warns that we do not give enough to others, have lost the art of connecting with those around us, and no longer possess a sense of belonging in society. – The Telegraph
Of course they’re miserable. They have nothing in common except government propaganda about equality, diversity, “freedom” and consumerism. You can do anything, but don’t expect us to like it, and by extension, don’t expect us to like you — you are not respected for your noble deeds, but for your cold hard cash and your willingness to support others in their business and social endeavors. The entire society has become a bazaar transaction.
And what happens in a dogma-centered society? A new political elite is created, of government workers and the entertainment figures who help reinforce the dominant paradigm. They are rewarded, and given excess power, because of their allegiance to dogma — not for their competence, by the way. Such societies are doubly miserable because incompetence is rife, mainly because no one is chosen for competence; only for dogma.
The Democratic Party and their union co-conspirators have been running a scam that takes the tax payments of the “have nots” and redistributes them to the “haves.” Yes, that’s right. The “haves” are actually being subsidized by the “have nots.” Bye, bye, Robin Hood.
Just who are these “haves”? They are the 22.5 million public sector employees of city, county, state and federal government. These are individuals who have close to life-time employment, pay that is often twice the level of an equivalent private sector employee, generous sick leave, annual leave, annual cost of living increases (even during recessions), great pension benefits, and health care benefits that private sector employees can only dream about.
The “have nots” are the private sector employees who pay the taxes that subsidize the public sector employees. Private sector employees lack job security, wages that can be half that of equivalent public sector jobs, limited or no sick leave, limited annual leave, limited cost of living increases, limited pension benefits, and partially paid health care benefits. – American Tinker
You have two choices for your future: the culture-based society, or the dogma-based society.
Under the culture-based model, you share a tangible familial relationship with others, and you have the basis for cooperation-collaboration relationships, since you’re all pulling in the same direction for the same values. For the glory of the Irish nation! Or the German, or the Aztec, or Georgian, what have you.
Under the dogma-based value, you have ultimate freedom. You can do anything you want, and if you screw up, government will bail you out. True, your life will pass without distinction, and you have no guaranteed place at a level above the dole and state-managed housing. You trade the ability to be recognized as a person with good traits for the ability to do anything, and a society where your only ability is transactional. Scratch my back, I scratch yours. Repeat the right dogma, get the phat job.
Samuel Huntington, the eminent and far-sighted historian, visualized a clash of civilizations which would define the post-modern, post-globalist era we entered with the turn of the millennium:
World politics is entering a new phase, and intellectuals have not hesitated to proliferate visions of what it will be-the end of history, the return of traditional rivalries between nation states, and the decline of the nation state from the conflicting pulls of tribalism and globalism, among others. Each of these visions catches aspects of the emerging reality. Yet they all miss a crucial, indeed a central, aspect of what global politics is likely to be in the coming years.
It is my hypothesis that the fundamental source of conflict in this new world will not be primarily ideological or primarily economic. The great divisions among humankind and the dominating source of conflict will be cultural. Nation states will remain the most powerful actors in world affairs, but the principal conflicts of global politics will occur between nations and groups of different civilizations. The clash of civilizations will dominate global politics. The fault lines between civilizations will be the battle lines of the future. – Foreign Affairs
I have an even simpler thesis: we’re going to see the clash of types of civilization, which is basically unresolved business from WWI-WWII and before.
Some people will want the modern model of a dogma-based civilization which values freedom more than stability, and so requires a giant government to keep everyone in line and issue the right propaganda about getting along with each other equally. These citizens will be of all races, ethnies, cultures, religions and creeds, which means the end result is that they will lose all of those things, and become the gray lumpenproletariat of the future: squat, short, indeterminate heritage, atheistic, no particular moral belief except the dogma they absorb from government, entertainment and advertising.
Others want to go their own way. They want to be part of a culture with an actual values system, so they have something to strive for beyond personal wealth, personal convenience, or personal “achievements” that generally consist in replicating acts others have done. They want to know that when they do something not just acceptable, not just profitable, and not just popular, but actually good, that people will praise them. They want a society united in agreement on the big values so it can reward people in intangible ways. These are the brave souls who see past the materialistic world and want more out of life.
These two civilizations are incompatible. Once you get Coca-Cola, equality education and Hollywood movies imported to a culture, you destroy it. People get addicted to the idea that there is a simple answer to everything: more dogma (freedom, consumerism, equality, diversity). They tear down anything that violates that rule, not because they care about the dogma, but because it’s a quick and fast way for them to have power. Kind of like handing a 7-year-old a .45 pistol and telling him to use his powers for good.
By the same token, one you decide to leave a dogma-based civilization and return to a culture-based one, you can no longer act as if you are the only one you need to please. You’re not working for yourself, or for others; you’re working to fulfill an idea, a vision of what that society ought to be. You need to be secure in who you are, and up for a challenge, to want this kind of society. It is a society for brave hearts.
These two incompatible societies are battling it out in politics, art, literature, religion and cinema. The short term trend is for the “convenient” answer, the dogma-based society that values “freedom,” to rule. It just feels bad to argue against good-sounding things like freedom, equality, diversity and consumerism. But as the results of these societies come to light, people are realizing how fundamentally flawed they are.
As a result, in the long term our species is shifting toward the culture-based society. You don’t get the promise of near-anarchistic “freedom,” but you do get a place in a hierarchy where you and only you belong. You get an option to be more than “a nice guy” and a salary; you get a chance to serve a role and to have others respect you for your good traits, your inner traits.
While the hollow nightmare of modern society reveals itself to be an endless maze of concrete blocks covered in advertising, filled with lonely people who dare not speak their inner hopes, the culture-based society is starting to look like a better option. Let us hope the Britons figure this out before misery erodes them.