ON SOCIETY

Part One

                        When men first crept from out earth's womb like worms,

                        Dumb speechless creatures, with scarce human forms,

                        With nails or doubled fists they used to fight

                        For acorns for sleeping-holes at night;

                        Horace

 

FOREWORD

Priorities

        The purpose of this chapter is to derive advanced principles of democracy through the application of conditional logic. 'Class Analysis' of society is not applied, for its concept is too broad and not as penetrating as the 'group analysis' of cultures. Classes are conceptual classifications with vague, undefined borders of demarcation. Whereas, organized groups have actual presence, set membership criteria, rules, fees, and clearly-defined goals. Conditional analysis of society focuses on the observations of groups, which can be studied scientifically. The smallest group is the family, that demonstrates the caring compassionate nature of human beings. At the other extreme are large, powerful groups such as political parties, trade unions, multi-national corporations, churches and many other organizations that demonstrate the confrontational aspects of human behavior.

        Historical transformations of society are unique, unlike biological evolutionary processes. Societal changes have been produced through the joint role of the human intellect and our biological imperatives. From primitive food-gathering past, human culture have been evolving into modern, industrialized scientific societies, with enormous capacities for good and evil. For this reason, the future of modern culture depends upon a more logical use of the human intellect, especially with regard to our social development.

        The evolution of the human culture have been and is being driven by individual and group activities well beyond needs, mostly for achieving special goals. These activities have been uncoordinated, and as such, are not motivated by the common interest of society. By the middle of the twentieth century, this activity has created 'a state of opposite potentials'. Human civilization now has the potential to flourish and rise to unprecedented levels of general well-being and cultured life, and in the long run, it can also perish. This negative extreme can only be avoided through the application of common sense logic, that requires the identification of the most serious negative aspects of the contemporary culture.

      The most important priority of our age is to secure survival. To achieve this goal, society's affairs must be directed truly intelligently. The power of human thought must be redirected to find better cultural conduct than the present one. Group analysis of societal life, various ideologies, the nature of governances, and the influence of powerful groups indicate that significant improvements should be made to get out of this perilous state. The 'thinking animal' should not be considered to be the most advanced creature on earth as long as it threatens itself with self-extinction.

      Today, people are completely interdependent and inter-reliant in obtaining the provision of their needs and livelihood. Total interdependence mandates a review of the noble ideas of bygone days. The two-three hundred years old ideas of philosophers, political scientists, and enlightened statesman, are no longer applicable. The present era is characterized by massive over production capacity, enormous means of mass destructions, global markets, near instant transportation and communication, whit no regard to the destruction of the natural environment. The present era also has the tangible means to establish general global welfare. Yet the images of large starving masses and the dying enter into the comfort of our living rooms. The mass media brings home daily, to the well-fed and well-housed, the sufferings and the mass murder of innocent people. Many people are becoming immune to such horrors, for being ceaselessly bombarded with news of mindless murderous acts.

      We also witness the plight of the jobless and the homeless in our cities. We fear for our own lives. We fear going out at night and walk on our own streets. Many people lock their doors and keep guns at hand at home and in their shops in fear of crimes. Growing prostitution, alcoholism, drugs, and crime, have become parts of daily life. We live in fear in the midst of potential affluence and peace. This is an anomaly and logical paradox.

      Since we are fully dependent and interreliant upon others, we must enact improved constitutions and laws to eliminate the destructive aspects contemporary democracy and set certain limits corporate freedoms. These limitations should not curb positive talent and creativity, and should continue assuring appropriate rewards for excellence - both in tangible benefits and esteem. We must apply cool logic and be brave enough to critically examine the sources of the deadly danger that in the long run threatens the human species with extinction. We must be wise and strong in order to eliminate the root causes of confrontational conditions and replace them with cooperative humanistic ideals. The purpose of this chapter is to explore the root causes of the threatening aspects of the current culture and to find new improved modes of societal conduct that can lead to the desired good consequences.

      Analysis of Current Conditions

The first task of conditional analysis is to uncover the underlying forces that are responsible for the existing negative conditions. The second task is to investigate the modes of transformations which offer the probability of a better more harmonious future. The conclusion was drawn in the previous chapter that the means of sustainability is a 'historical conditional'. Consequently, a systematic investigation must begin with uncovering the fundamental reasons that have brought our food gatherer human ancestors together into social groups. The same historical conditionality renders the examination of the current conditions and conduct, both within national boundaries and globally.

       Well known significant differences exist in available resources and consequent living conditions within a single nation. Even greater are the differences in the living circumstances of people who are citizens of different nation states. Despite unequal levels of regional or national means of sustenance, an obvious condition for peaceful coexistence is that the provisions for sheer existence be globally provided. The elementary criteria of peaceful coexistence is the protection of human life. This means support of the livelihood of the people in a rational manner. The provision of the 'fundamental and basic needs' of the people is the most logical criteria of peaceful coexistence. And, as we have seen in the previous part, that happens to coincide with the noble moral principle of 'survival morality'. Humane philosophy views life as precious, therefore mandates satisfying the fundamental and basic needs of the people and their protection from physical harm.

       Independent of the moral and rational principles of individual survival, detached logic also mandates worldwide creation of cooperative peaceful conditions. These requirements are inherently related. There cannot be peace and harmony in a society in which the fundamental and basic needs of life are not satisfied.

      In many regions of the world, the elementary needs of the people are not satisfied. In such regions, instead of peace, internal strife and violence are frequent and instead of law and harmony anarchy prevails. Modern science and technology can now empower organized groups and desperate individuals to fatally harm society. Yet the enormous production capability of modern industry and agriculture is now capable of satisfying the 'primary' needs of every person on this globe. These combined with modern transportation and distribution facilities and communication systems can change the course of events. We now have the potential to change a fiercely competitive and confrontational world to become a cooperative society. These desired changes can only be attained through the application of rational theories.

            The established constitutions, laws, financial and fiscal controls - the instruments of societal affairs in general - are unable to act in the interest of long-range survival and harmony. The conduct of many leaders, at the highest levels of governances, clashes with basic principles of good morality, and, in some cases, even clashes with codified laws. When the pursuit of special interests is unbridled in the name of liberty, then anarchy threatens in the long run.

            The extreme pursuit of special interests have become the cause of bloody strife and armed clashes between otherwise peaceful neighbors. Extremist leaders whip up heated sentiments of nationalism, racial and religious hatred for different countries, to the point of violent clashes. In other parts of the world, people live peacefully and cooperatively despite their differing cultural backgrounds.

            The intellect is compelled to examine the underlying reasons for undesirable human conditions and conduct which have the potential to lead to violent consequences. Whatever region of the world is examined, the established cultures are not in accord with the principles of long-range, ultimate, sustainability of society. Contemporary societal conduct undermines peaceful coexistence and ultimately threatens sheer survival. Systems based on confrontation instead of cooperation have to be transformed to become cooperative. This is only wishful thinking, in spite of common sense and scientific logic, which mandates such positive change.