Furthest Right

Why Societies Decay

Some thinkers point out that a lack of boundaries leads to a civilization losing its culture and becoming ideologically-based:

Schmitt traced a clear link between the nomos of the sea and the rise of free trade, capitalism, parliamentarism, constitutionalism, and the ideology of human rights. Denying the political in favor of economic and moral universalism is a maritime phenomenon; the modern itself is maritime in essence. The infusion of liberalism into the state became part tragedy, part farce. Modern societies became “liquid” like the sea itself, always on the move, temporary, unstable. The heavy is made light, the collective is individualized, identities are not firm or permanent—in the free-floating liquid world they also sail from port to port.

That is the fluid world based on the legacy of the Enlightenment, on the view of man as a fully autonomous subject independent of all natural, religious, and historical restraints, capable of constructing his own reality and constantly reinventing himself. Man’s separation from land and his turning to the sea morphed into an emancipatory project based on individualism, universalism, and progressivism. Totalitarian tendencies were always immanent to this endeavor. It cannot but criminalize every enemy, foreign or domestic. It knows no physical frontiers, it accepts no limits.

This argument comes to us familiar from history, since sea power turns out to be quite important:

Mahan argued that British control of the seas, combined with a corresponding decline in the naval strength of its major European rivals, paved the way for Great Britain’s emergence as the world’s dominant military, political, and economic power. Mahan and some leading American politicians believed that these lessons could be applied to U.S. foreign policy, particularly in the quest to expand U.S. markets overseas.

The 1890s were marked by social and economic unrest throughout the United States, which culminated in the onset of an economic depression between 1893 and 1894. The publication of Mahan’s books preceded much of the disorder associated with the 1890s, but his work resonated with many leading intellectuals and politicians concerned by the political and economic challenges of the period and the declining lack of economic opportunity on the American continent.

Just as with corporations, whoever grows fastest gains the most power and wealth, and therefore can administrate as it sees fit, which generally means utilitarianism: making most people “happy.”

As a consequence, this power must expand to incorporate more than it finds in its home nation, both gaining it great power and destroying its identity. It becomes a generic thing.

If we translate this, it means that diversity is the opposite of what it appears to be: rather than a celebration of differences, it means gradual homogenization toward a mean.

Consider the change in the world since globalism was adopted in the early 1990s. Just about every street now looks Americanized, complete with a Starbucks and McDonald’s, the same cars, the same products.

When you make one world market, and something “wins” out against its competition, it becomes the new standard, replacing your culture. This thing can be liberal democracy, market socialism, or a new running shoe.

Societies begin with a sense of purpose: defeat nature and organizational challenges. When this goes, they need a new quest, and usually settle on the most popular one socially, namely taking care of everyone.

That however funnels wealth, energy, time, and power from the top and feeds it to the bottom, creating a center that administers this process. That grows out of control because demand is infinite, consuming the society.

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