A sensible view of humanity would see as as individual critters attempting to control others enough to be safe, while staying out of the power of others, and accumulating enough wealth, power, and status to eat, reproduce, and be comfortable. Once you see humanity as this kind of self-consuming competition, it becomes hard to take anything people say seriously, because you know that all are manipulations designed to raise their own status while lowering yours for believing them.
Out there on the internet, the idea of a “third way” was popular for some time, before people realized that it was simply a re-branded form of one of the existing ways. Neither conservative nor liberal, the theory ran, this third way philosophy would describe a government which avoids the exploitation and incompetence that is the hallmark of democracy.
Unfortunately for all third way fans, every single one of their attempts seemed to merely be a hybrid like neoconservatism or neoliberalism (market socialism). They wanted some government control of the economy, but basically free markets, albeit with some special interests built into the system. Surprising no one, the great “third way” trend died out relatively young, although someone is always trying to revive it, somewhere.
What no one mentions might go unnoticed, except that we can describe it here: instead of a system based within the egalitarian framework, we can find a “third way” in a system based around the ideal of society as an integral and cogent part of a larger system, like a divine order of nature and the gods in which balance, function, and existential hedonism — a deep pleasure taken in the experience of being alive and believing that life tends toward goodness — rule over individual concerns and group utilitarian demands.
Consider the argument over legalizing or decriminalizing drugs. You quickly see two sides emerge:
In other words, the Left tries to protect the individual from society enforcing its standards, while the Right tries to protect other individuals from the consequences of that individual not following social standards. One tries to protect the outlier against the need of the majority, the other the majority against outliers. Neither addresses the raw question of whether or not we need transgressive outliers at all in the first place.
So what is the third way?
As is said often around here, eugenics is the prince of all sciences, since like natural selection it does not seek to control anyone, only bump the good upstairs and silently remove the bad. Plato’s formulation again: “good to the good, and bad to the bad,” which clashes with the egalitarian idea, “do good to everyone,” which benefits the bad since the good are already good and generally experience good results from that.
Let us consider an honest third way where we are not responsible for all of the humanity failing around us. We are interested in success, yes? Reward success, and get rid of anything that impedes it. This requires letting people die in the streets or exiling them, but no one will remember them long, and the next generation will have fewer problems.
Modern systems find their basis in utilitarianism, or the idea that all people have the same minimal rationality and therefore, whatever most people think is good should be done. However, people are just trying to game the system for their own interests, so this ends up neutering our ability to remove bad while penalizing the good for not taking the shortcuts that bad does.
It is like telling students that if they hand in their paper on time, it will be harshly graded, but if they hand it in late, they get a lenient form of grading. The good people do all the real work, pay most of the taxes, and spend their time fighting for sanity against the consummate pathology of illusion that animates the crowd.
As we come out of the era of parasitism that was egalitarian society, we are looking to move toward a new type of civilization where only those who can demonstrate utility are kept around. We have no shortage of humans; we need only those that are good and useful. The rest have to go somewhere else, or get exiled to the middle of the ocean or something. No one really cares but we are tired of carrying their vampiric, passive-aggressive, and naggingly guilt-slinging burdens for them.